A week of activities has been planned for public health nurse, from July 5 to 11, under the theme: "Public Health Nurses: Building A Healthy Nation".

During this period, attention will be focused on the role of the public health nurse as a resource person for the community.??

Public health nursing is a broad discipline, which covers a wide range of functions.?? A significant aspect of the nurses’ duty is their ability to respond to diverse health needs of various groups in the community. These nurses are assigned to work with members of the health care team and their services extend to individuals, families and institutions within their respective catchment areas. Business places and worksites, day nurseries, schools and homes, which may all need guidance on health issues, benefit from the work of public health nurses in the community.

While some people may be familiar with the nurse as a midwife or a caretaker for the sick, nurses are trained to work with people at all stages of the life cycle, (from the cradle to the grave) and to play a key role in promoting health and wellness.

These health care providers are also involved in planning for routine immunisations, to responding to threats and disasters, where they have a role in identifying vulnerable clients and providing essential links to social services that may be necessary after an event.?? The nurses’ performance can be likened to a balancing act, as they are expected to respond quickly to an emerging communicable disease threat, while at the same time dealing with persons who are vulnerable to chronic diseases.

This year, the highlight of the Ministry of Health’s activities will be community outreach events, where members of the public will be counselled and educated about pertinent health issues, such as hygiene measures that must be undertaken as the world faces the pandemic influenza – Influenza A (H1N1).

Public health nurses here will start the week with divine worship at the St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church, Jemmotts Lane, St. Michael, on Sunday, July 5, at 11:00 a.m.

On Wednesday, July 8, as part of their community outreach programme, the nurses will hold a health fair at Sheraton Centre Mall, Christ Church from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

This will be followed by another one on Friday, July 10 at Super Centre, Sunset Crest in St. James, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.??????????

The week will climax on Saturday, July 11, with a fun/health walk that will take participants on a journey from Browne’s Beach, St. Michael to the South Coast Board Walk in Christ Church. It gets under way at 6:00 a.m. and concludes with the serving of breakfast by public health nurses.


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