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Hawaii: Outlook and Challenges for Public Health Nurses

Higher Education Articles September 27, 2013

Public health nursing fills a crucial role in creating a high quality of life in a given community. It has a primary focus of protecting and promoting the health of a society through a combination of nursing, health sciences and social sciences. Public health nursing focuses on a population with the goals of preventing disease while promoting health for the entire society. Ideally, public health nursing helps to foster the conditions that support ongoing thriving health for all.

A Holistic Approach to Health

“Health” refers to an optimal state of well-being that embodies physical, mental, environmental and social components. The state of Hawaii believes it is a right of all people and facilitates this ideal with programs like public health nursing. The public health system in Hawaii has a vision of equity in health advantages for all of the people in the community. The mission of the public health nursing system in Hawaii is to enrich and enhance the safety and health of all of its residents. It does so through the promotion of effective and sustainable community practices.

Other responsibilities of Hawaii’s public health program include:

• Monitoring health risk factors
• Encouraging healthy lifestyles
• Assuring safe, ergonomic, healthy workplaces
• Local support for families and communities
• Pollution prevention
• Petitioning and working with state and federal authorities as needed
• Preservation of a clean and healthy natural environment through recycling and enhancing water and air quality
• Ensuring that the basic health needs of all community members are met accessibly and affordably

Hawaii Public Heath Challenges and Obstacles

Hawaii News Now lists heart failure, bacterial pneumonia and mental health as the three top concerns facing Hawaii’s public health system at this time. Some have even referred to the state of mental health services in the state as being “in crisis,” citing a 20% increase in hospitalizations and cuts to community programs for mental health treatment as the main cause.

These issues mark the importance of employing what those in Hawaiian public health nursing call the “mauka makai” model – a way of shifting away from acute and crisis care to ongoing community-based efforts. This holistic approach has a proven track record of addressing treatable issues effectively while they are manageable and preventing them from escalating.

It Takes a Village

This shift marks a major transition in healthcare, focusing on the social environment in schools, churches and the workplace to help improve the overall health and well-being of the entire community. Putting some of the onus on these community partners will assist in improving outcomes and reducing costs for public health in Hawaii going forward.

The average salary of public health nurses was $65,470 in 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Exact salaries for nursing jobs can vary depending upon the employer, exact location, applicant experience and job-specific requirements. The job outlook for nurses in general is a growth rate of 19% for 2012 through 2022, which is higher than the national average.

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Searching Searching ...

Matching School Ads
5 Program(s) Found
  • Do you aspire to fulfill an evolving healthcare role as a highly-qualified nursing professional? GCU is the place for you.
  • RNs, pursue your BSN or MSN conveniently online, backed by the legacy of GCU's traditional campus.
  • GCU's bachelor's and master's programs prepare students to fill roles in direct care, management, health education and administrative disciplines.
  • The baccalaureate degree in nursing and master's degree in nursing at GCU are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Develop with hands-on practice, online and lab simulations and in depth peer discussions exploring best practices.
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
3 Program(s) Found
  • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
  • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
  • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
  • Michigan's largest independent college.
  • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
  • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
Show more [+]
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
5 Program(s) Found
  • Online Bachelor's programs include BBA, Criminal Justice, Psychology, IT, Healthcare Management & Public Health
  • Over 115 years of delivering quality education and personalized attention to students
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked 8th among the Best Online Graduate Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • A private, co-ed college founded in 1821 and located in downtown Washington, D.C.
  • Its student-faculty ratio is 13:1, and 55.1% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
  • Has distinguished alumni including Senator Harry Reid, former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, and actress Courtney Cox.
Show more [+]
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
1 Program(s) Found
  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities (beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities.
  • Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WUSCUC).
  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid

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