Managing Chronic Diseases in the Primary Care Setting

Date:  2021-03-08 21:17:12
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Chronic diseases are the major causes of premature deaths, disabilities, and the increased mortality rates in both developed and developing countries. In most cases, these diseases are associated with individuals' genetics and the increasing social inequalities. It includes increased tobacco use, unhealthy diets among people of all ages, physical inactivity, and lack of access to the preventative care. This essay will focus on the impacts brought by the chronic diseases, how evidence based plan can be used to reduce them and the role of nurses in caring for the patients with the chronic diseases.

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Impacts of Chronic Diseases on Health as Whole

Most chronic diseases affect the entire health of the body and the quality of life which leads to a decreased productivity among the working population. Also, it leads to loss of income in case one of the family members lost his or her source of employment due to the chronic diseases. Absenteeism is also an impact of the chronic diseases which leads to major losses in most companies and government institutions (Baisch, 2009).

Moreover, most chronic diseases a major drive to most healthcare-related costs which directly have a related business impacts. As stated earlier absenteeism is a setback to any business due to the lost time. According to the information released by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately seventy-five percent of the national spending is allocated to healthcare where the government spends at least $5,300 per annum to take care of patients with the chronic diseases.

Additionally, there is the impact of behavioral choices which results from the chronic diseases. These choices are completely expensive. From the reports, approximately 45% of the US population suffers from the chronic diseases. The common chronic diseases that most Americans suffer from are heart related diseases, cancer, stroke and diabetes. One in every four Americans suffers from multiple chronic diseases (Ockene, 2006).

Further, the aging population is affected by the chronic diseases. The reason behind this is that most of the aged people have adopted some irritating and unhealthy habits which increase their rate of contracting chronic diseases. For instance, they embrace tobacco use, poor nutrition and finally most of them do not engage themselves in physical activities. In general, this increases their risks of contracting these kinds of chronic illnesses.

Therefore, chronic diseases increase the national burden as the national government has to increase its spending allocated to the health care budget (Piper. 2008). Another thing that is quite clear is that most of these diseases impact negatively to businesses and government institutions due the increased absenteeism. Most of the family with patients suffering from the chronic illnesses also suffers lost income as people infected can no longer work and provide for them. This leads to loss of income, hence, this leads to poor living standards among these families.

How evidence-based plans of care can reduce the health care cost burden placed on Americans and cost-effectiveness achieved by the use of evidence-based plans of care.

From the research and reports that have been compiled by various organizations and government institutions. Evidence-based plans tend and can reduce the health care costs when various interventions are adopted in order to enhance cost-effectiveness. Adopting effective interventions can help reduce the cost of health care when applied in all levels. That is, to individuals, community and at population levels.

One of the evidence that has been submitted is that one of the strongest measures to reduce health care costs in chronic disease management is to reduce tobacco use and increase the rate and frequency of physical activity among all people in the US. These are some of the interventions that can be applied at the individual level and help reduce the rate of chronic diseases among people in the country (Povlsen & Burp, 2011).

Further, there is a large gap on knowledge on how people of all ages can change their eating habits in order to achieve healthy weights. Most people are obsessed with fast foods which have negative impacts on their weights and the entire wellness of their bodies. These are some of the recommendations that are supported by the scientific evidence submitted by various accredited bodies in the health sector in the US. However, the field is dynamic and more research continues to be done especially on the clinical preventative care.

One of the recommendations that have been supported by scientific evidence is the role and the importance of a healthy public policy (Morewitz, 2006). Generally, most of the government interventions promote healthy living amongst its population. The main aim of these policies is to support intersectoral approaches mainly through different government verified actions and finally through effective public health improvements.

Secondly, community-based programs should be implemented. They should be delivered at the population level. This is effectively achieved through health education, community trainings, public awareness programs and campaign. Finally, it is the role of the government to support the community and ensure delivery system reforms for health care in all ways and means.

Moreover, clinical preventative measures should be also adopted. Prevention should be achieved at the early stage where there is early detection. One of the preventative services that are recommended is screening which is cost effective. Further, most of the chronic diseases patients are advised to reduce tobacco use and general exposure to it. This will enable the entire population to reduce the premature deaths associated with this and these diseases in general.

Role That Advanced Practice Nurses Have In Caring For Patients with Chronic Diseases

Nurses play an important role in detection, treatment and care of patients with chronic diseases. This is achieved in various ways. To start with, nurses play an important role in health promotions where they are mandated to provide patients with information on how to prevent some of these diseases by adopting healthy living. This means healthy diets, maximum physical activity and frequent screening in order to detect these diseases at an early stage (Milstein & Hellen, 2010).

Secondly, nurses play an important role in medical management where they take care of patients by ensuring correct diagnosis. They prescribe patients various drugs and advice them to go for various checkups when necessary. Further, nurses also help in symptoms management where they advise patients on what they should do on a regular basis to maintain healthy living. Finally, nurses are very instrumental at the community level in disseminating health information in community trainings and in the public awareness campaigns.


Baisch M. J, (2009) Journal of Advanced Nursing: Community health: an evolutionary concept analysis.

Milstein, Arnold, & Helen Darling, (2010), "Better U.S. Health Care at Lower Cost." Issues in Science and Technology 26

Morewitz, S. J. (2006). Chronic diseases and health care: New trends in diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, low back pain, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. New York, NY: Springer.

Ockene JK, (2006). Fulfilling our assignment to improve the health of all: good science just isn't enough. Piper S, (2008). A qualitative study exploring the relationship between nursing and health promotion language, theory and practice.

Povlsen L & Borup I. K, (2011). Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences Holism in nursing and health promotion: distinct or related perspectives?a literature review

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