Heart Failure in Prince George’s County, Maryland
Discuss Health Concern
Prince George’s County, Maryland spans 482.69 miles, making up 27 towns and cities. As of July 1, 2016 the population is estimated to be about 908,049 residents (U.S. Census, 2010). According to the 2016 health report conducted by the Prince George’s County Health Department the most prevalent disease among the population is heart disease (Creekmur, 2016, p.9). The Prince George’s County Health Department Community Health Needs Assessment (2016) more specifically reported that heart disease is the leading cause heart failure in the county (p.48-53).
Pathophysiology and Etiology
Heart failure is considered to be a long-term disease and occurs when the heart is not working properly. The heart does not pump the blood effectively, which leads to diminished blood flow. This in turn can cause clogging in the veins and lungs, among many other changes that can weaken the heart (Arnold, n.d.).
Some of the things that can cause a person to be in heart failure are obesity, having an abnormal heart rhythm, having had a heart attack, diabetes, and having high blood pressure among other things (American Heart Association, 2017a). “One in five Americans will develop heart failure in their life time,” (American Heart Association, 2017b).
There are three types of prevention in healthcare; primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary prevention is where the focus is on the things that can be done to prevent the disease. Secondary prevention is when the focus is on slowing down the disease and treating it properly. The final type, tertiary prevention, is where the focus is on getting back to a person’s normal health levels.
There are several ways to practice primary prevention for heart failure. One way is getting into a regular work out schedule, and actively trying to lose weight if you are overweight or obese. Another way is to seek help from a nutritionist who can explain how to eat healthily and maintain a good diet. Additionally, keeping stress to a minimum and maintaining proper blood pressure are helpful ways to lower the risk of having heart failure.
Secondary prevention can include some of the same interventions as primary prevention such as weight control and blood pressure control. Secondary prevention focuses on slowing the advancement of the disease and trying to treat it. Talking to your doctor and being put on the right medications to control blood pressure, and the viscosity of blood are a few secondary prevention interventions (Arnold, n.d.).
Tertiary prevention focuses on getting an individual back to their original health, or as close to it as possible. This could mean having surgery to have a stent placed in the heart to open up a blocked pathway. There are even some kinds of devices can be placed in the heart to keep rhythms normal. Another form of tertiary prevention is cardiac rehabilitation. This type of rehab focuses on patient teaching, regular exercise, and getting a patient back to their normal so that they can do everyday activities again (Fahey ; Schroeder, 2004).
Access for Assistance
Medical ; Fitness
Prince George’s County, Maryland consists of several hospitals, free clinics, and drug stores for local residents to access according to their needs. There are five hospitals, available to residents; Doctors Community Hospital, Fort Washington Medical Center, Laurel Regional Hospital, MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center, and Prince George’s Hospital Center (Prince George’s County Health Department, 2016, p.2). There are 13 free clinics throughout the county if residents don’t have insurance and need medical attention. (Free clinic directory, 2018) Among the county there are 88 drug stores residents can receive their prescriptions from According to the American Fact Finder (2017) In Prince George’s county there are 535 physician offices, along with 88 drug stores that residents can receive their prescriptions from. Prince George’s County residents also have access to 61 different fitness and recreational sport facilities to promote exercise and healthy living.
The Prince George’s county population has access to 424 food stores as a resource to groceries for healthier diets. 82 are identified as supermarkets, 144 as convenience stores, 81 are superettes, 52 are considered international stores, and 65 are identified as other (Maryland Food System Map Project, 2014, p. 2). Overall, Prince George’s County has a myriad of resources so that the inhabitants can live a heart healthy life style.