Leadership Learning Experience

Healthcare data is important and helps determine the underlying conditions and help healthcare professionals intervene to promote the population’s health. Primary healthcare is an area that is often ignored, ad much attention and finding is used in curative health. The healthcare costs in preventing illnesses are much lower than the costs of curing or rehabilitating a patient after a disease has occurred.

Leadership Learning Experience

In healthcare, various conditions do not mean disease but are precursors to disease conditions. These include smoking, alcohol intake, and obesity. Obesity is an epidemic in the US, and this proposal analysis its impact on the population and proposes interventions to prevent and manage obesity through community-based interventions community.

Population Health Issues, area of practice, and the healthcare environment

The health issue of interest is adult obesity. Obesity is characterized by excess fat accumulation in the body, usually explained by a mass index above 30kg/m2 (Chooi et al., 2019). Primary care professionals focus on disease prevention at the individual, family, and community levels. Włodarczyk et al. (2019) note that obesity is not a disease but causes significant health conditions and increases the risk for contracting diseases such as type 2 diabetes, infertility, high blood pressure, heart disease, breast, colon, and endometrial cancers, arthritis, and chronic lower back pain.

These diseases contribute to a significant percentage of patients in healthcare hence their significance to primary health and the healthcare environment (Włodarczyk et al., 2019). Adult obesity is highly preventable despite its many health risks, hence its importance to primary care and the healthcare environment.

Evidence of Obesity

Obesity affects a significant percentage of Americans. The rates of obesity are gradually rising and have risen by over 10% in the last two decades to 41.7% in 2019 (CDC, 2020). The CDC (2020) also notes that severe obesity prevalence doubled in the same period (4.7% to 9.2%). The rates of obesity are highest among African Americans (49.9% followed by Hispanics (45%) (CDC, 2022). The burden of obesity increases with age, and the number of individuals (above 20 years) overweight (including obese patients) was 73% in 2018.

These percentages show a significant risk to the population’s health if the situation is not contained. Other reports indicate that obesity increases the risk for premature deaths, is mentioned in over 100,000 deaths, and leads to over $100 billion in losses yearly through direct (diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up) and indirect (health education, promotion, and prevention, and lost productivity from premature deaths) costs (Yusefzadeh et al., 2019). Obesity is thus an epidemic requiring much attention to help reduce morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs.

Areas contributing to Adult Obesity

Sedentary lifestyles are the major cause of obesity in the US. Individuals have focused on work that involves less physical work and spends many hours sitting down in offices, traveling in cars, and doing less physical work. Poor physical activity reduces muscle tone and glucose utilization, increasing its storage as fats, hence growing weight.

The adult population also pays less attention to healthy diets by eating more junk food. Many stores and homes in the US have more junk food than healthy food, such as whole grains and vegetables. These eating habits have led to increased obesity rates. Genetics also exposes individuals to obesity. Some individuals are obese due to genetics, but the percentage is too low to cause the current obesity epidemic (Omer, 2020).

According to research, some ethnic groups have higher rates of obesity than others. Hispanics and African Americans are more exposed to obesity than non-Hispanic whites, as seen earlier (CDC, 2020). Obesity can rarely occur in hormonal imbalances in hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease (Wilding, 2020). These diseases cause weight gain due to hormonal imbalances, hence their association with obesity.

Proposed Innovation and Justification

Various interventions can help manage the current obesity crisis. The proposed intervention is community education on the burden, risks, and ways of preventing and managing obesity and community screening and referral for obesity. The community-based intervention will help reach more adults because individuals only visit hospitals when sick. Unlike other medical conditions, most obese patients do not have any underlying healthcare conditions and thus do not go to the hospital.

Community education targets obese patients for secondary prevention and non-obese community members for primary prevention. Pearce et al. (2019) note that guidelines involving screening for obesity and obesity prevention face barriers by societal stereotypes that obesity depends on personal responsibility and choice. The study shows that community education programs should be coupled with community screening and referral services to manage adult obesity effectively (p 15).

Stokes et al. (2018) note that most current guidelines in obesity management are elusive due to the multifactor involved in obesity development and risk. The study notes that screening and referral of patients enhance their access to care early and help revert obesity and prevent undesirable yet preventable obesity complications. Rutledge et al. (2018) show that community resources, such as social institutions, are good adjuncts to the existing policies, guidelines, and efforts in managing adult obesity. Community education increases awareness and the urge to portray healthy behaviors; thus, coupling it with access to healthcare services will help manage obesity significantly.

Recommended Resources for The Innovation

There are various resources required for the proposed intervention. Two nurses and two nursing technical will help set props, educate the community, and screen and refer patients. A projector and a laptop, printed fliers, sources of water and electricity, consultation forms, and a weight measuring device are also required for this project. Also, six community volunteers will be recruited and given monetary incentives during the program.

Another resource required is advertisement fees to ensure people are aware of the program to ensure many of them attend. These resources will assist with delivering multimedia education and screening and referring patients with obesity or overweight. The education will take place in six months, and decisions based on the program’s success will determine its continuity. The expected outcomes are decreased risks for obesity and obesity remission in the adult population.

Cost-Benefit Analysis

Health prevention interventions are expensive but cheaper than curative and rehabilitative health. The estimated cost of the innovation is $500,000 for the whole period of six months. Healthcare return on investment focuses on the benefits of a program and its ability to prevent a health risk. The program will help prevent obesity and its associated conditions such as diabetes (the most expensive healthcare condition), coronary heart disease, and cancers.

It will also help screen patients at their convenience and increase healthcare preventive measures utilization. In addition, it will also help increase community members’ productivity due to healthier living. It will thus contribute to reducing the over $100 billion yearly obesity costs (Yusefzadehet al., 2019).

Implementation Timeline

The education program will be implemented in six months. A two-month pre-implementation period will help gather the resources required for the education program. It will also be to ensure the program acquires funding from donors. The program will be divided into three phases, entailing service delivery to specific counties in the state. The data for each group of counties will be evaluated and presented differently.

Stakeholders

The stakeholders for the program are the nurses, nurse assistants, nursing informatics, the adult population, donors, and the healthcare institution. I met with all these stakeholders, including the community members. They all promised to support the program. The hospital agreed to let the program use the electronic health records and its informatics program for the project.

The community members promised to attend the community education programs, learn, and implement what they learned. The obesity society is the selected organization to fund the program. On reaching out, they promised to support the program on the condition that they monitor its progress and receive monthly briefings on data usage and utilization.

The first stakeholder is the hospital which will provide some resources for the program. Data collected will be entered and analyzed in the hospital’s healthcare database, making them vital for the stakeholders. The program will use funds from donors interested in funding the program. The donors will be integral, and the funds will help run the program, print materials, pay for grounds (where necessary), and pay the professionals involved. They will also monitor the program for its efficiency as agreed when acquiring the funds.

The healthcare informatics will process data entered in the program and analyze it to help inform decision-making. The nurses and nurse assistants will run the program in the field. The adult population is also essential for the success of the program. Their presence in large numbers will magnify the program’s impact and help produce data to substantiate the relevance and importance of the program. Thus, all these stakeholders are important and will determine the program’s success.

Proposed Innovation Implementation and Evaluation

The proposed innovation will take six months. A two-month pre-implementation period will allow for planning and approval of the program by the relevant authorities and ensure all resources are available and ready for use. The program will also embed a special data entry tool for the community education program.

The program will enter data on the number of community members educated each day and the number of patients screened and referred each day. The education will take place play every two days in the various community centers in the county. Data will be analyzed and reported every month for six months. Monthly briefing to determine the progress and possibility of beneficial disruptive innovations will help produce better outcomes.

The program’s core objective is to ensure more than 500,000 obese individuals access relevant healthcare services. It also plans to meet 2 million community members and educate them exclusively on obesity and its prevention in the state for six months. The data for the program will be evaluated based on the ability to meet these set benchmarks. The program will also be assessed based on the utilization of the planned resources. These parameters will help determine the success of the innovation.

Role as a Scientist, Detective, and Manager of the Healing Environment

I played various roles during the proposal development and associated investigations. As a detective, I investigated matters affecting the population and discovered that obesity among adults is very high. As a scientist, I utilized my knowledge and researched the topic of obesity to determine its causes, complications, and prevention strategies. I also studied effective evidence-based interventions that could help manage the problem.

As a manager of the healing environment, I utilized interprofessional collaboration skills to consult and gather support from various professionals. Using available resources, I also used my skills to plan and implement the innovations. Thus, I played the roles of a scientist, detective, and manager of the healing environment.

Conclusion

Obesity is a condition, not a disease, with various implications and side effects. The number of individuals with obesity has been rising, creating a need for its prevention. Most individuals with obesity do not have a health condition or symptoms necessitating a visit to the hospital, making it difficult to manage the problem in healthcare settings. Community education, screening, and referral are thus the interventions of choice. The education will run for six months in various counties in the state and will be accompanied by screening and referral to healthcare facilities for further care.

References

  • Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), (2022). Overweight and Obesity. Adult Obesity Facts. https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/index.html
  • Chooi, Y. C., Ding, C., & Magkos, F. (2019). The epidemiology of obesity. Metabolism92, 6-10. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.metabol.2018.09.005
  • Omer, T. (2020). The causes of obesity: an in-depth review. Adv Obes Weight Manag Control10(4), 90-94.
  • Pearce, C., Rychetnik, L., Wutzke, S., & Wilson, A. (2019). Obesity prevention and the role of hospital and community-based health services: a scoping review. BMC Health Services Research19(1), 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4262-3
  • Rutledge, G. E., Lane, K., Merlo, C., & Elmi, J. (2018). Coordinated approaches to strengthen state and local public health actions to prevent obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Preventing Chronic Disease15. https://doi.org/10.5888/pcd15.170493
  • Stokes, A., Collins, J. M., Grant, B. F., Hsiao, C. W., Johnston, S. S., Ammann, E. M., … & Scamuffa, R. F. (2018). Prevalence and determinants of engagement with obesity care in the United States. Obesity26(5), 814-818. https://doi.org/10.1002/oby.22173
  • Wilding, J. P. (2020). Endocrine testing in obesity. European Journal of Endocrinology182(4), C13-C15.
  • Włodarczyk, M., & Nowicka, G. (2019). Obesity, DNA damage, and development of obesity-related diseases. International Journal of Molecular Sciences20(5), 1146. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20051146
  • Yusefzadeh, H., Rashidi, A., & Rahimi, B. (2019). Economic burden of obesity: A systematic review. Social Health and Behavior2(1), 7. https://doi.org/10.4103/SHB.SHB_37_18