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NURS 417 – Health Education Series

Caitlin Norton, Brenna Menzel, Kaitlin Slagter, Brennen Porter, Hailey Opperman, Matthew Knieriem, Erika Johnson, Rickey Minder, Hayley Brown, Corinne O’ Callaghan
Prof. Tammie Sherner – NURS 417
Boise City Ada County Housing Authority

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Introduction

Learning Goal:

To identify common healthcare needs within the low income housing population and develop a comprehensive health education series that lays out short and long term interventions that can be implemented to improve the health of the resident population.

Reflection

This project has morphed exponentially. Within our specific community, our group had numerous options for how we could make an impact. Our initial idea was to create a Health Education series that could be hosted for the residents every month that included fun activities, education, and takeaways that would benefit the health of the community. This project soon experienced the hinders of COVID restrictions and lack of time, and we soon realized that we could not complete what we wanted to with the amount of time we were given.

This challenge led us to the idea of empowering the community to host events themselves; to leave behind a tool for the residents to better their own health. We decided that a binder with tools and resources the residents have access to would better suit the community. This binder houses educational pamphlets, contact information for specific agencies that could assist with the event, and external resources that the volunteers could use to host their own events long after we are gone. We hosted one event to show how what we accumulated could be put into motion. This event was a great success and the results are discussed below.

This project has opened our eyes to the need for public health services. As future nurses, it’s important we focus on what the community healthcare needs are and tailor our care to meet those needs. This project has done just that; we were forced to change our project based on what the community needed, but also the safety requirements put in place due to COVID. It has challenged us to gear our thinking into those who need our help in the public setting, and not just in the hospital setting.

Community Partner: Boise City Ada County Housing Authority

Mission Statement:

Boise City/Ada County Housing Authorities’ innovate housing programs and partnerships to provide individuals and families with a foundation for stability and resiliency in a vibrant living environment.

Project Purpose:

To assess and identify the essential health needs of low-income individuals, perform a health promotion clinic evaluating blood pressure, and provide sustainable health education pertaining to the resident’s greatest health needs.

Course Concepts

  • Engage with diverse populations to gain perspective on relevant health needs within the Housing Authority community. Our team demonstrated this by hosting our “Sip and Chat” and tailoring our health promotion activities to the greatest health needs within the population.
  • Demonstrate effective collaboration and care coordination between the Housing Authorities, Boise State University, and community partners. We utilized BSU and the community by reaching out for resources and educational materials.
  • Utilize evidence-based educational resources to promote health. We included scholarly resources in our health education series binder to ensure that the residents are getting evidence-based health information in order to be successful.
  • Apply core nursing concepts and cultural competence when working with low-income populations. When conducting our blood pressure clinic, we demonstrated core nursing concepts by educating the residents on factors that contribute to high blood pressure and gave recommendations on ways they can lower their blood pressure by using the resources they have available to them.

Methods

Image of the students who did the project
  • Met virtually with the Housing Authority’s Service coordinators.
  • Obtained a windshield survey of all three locations.
  • Conducted a “Sip and Chat” event to propose a written survey assessing resident needs at each location (72 responses total out of 253).
  • Identified blood pressure as one of the main education needs.
  • Purchased blood pressure cuffs for all three locations.
  • Conducted a blood pressure clinic conveying pertinent education with heart healthy food care packages.
  • Created a binder filled with health resources for residents concerning exercise, blood pressure, stress management, vaccine education, & diabetes.

Results

Our group held one event to show the residents how they could put on a health event for the rest of the community. We decided to hold a blood pressure clinic that proved successful; many were not aware of the interventions required to lower their blood pressure. We provided education and gave them the tools to better their health.

Our goal to address the many health needs of this community was met with the development of the health binder and empowering the volunteers in the Housing Authority to organize their own events.

Based on surveys taken after the event, many were willing to attend future events.

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