Learning in the nursing profession is a continuous process that equips healthcare workers with additional insights and concepts for transforming their patients’ experiences. Within the contexts of my hospital and community, I have engaged in numerous teaching exercises that have widened my scope of practice and philosophy. The outstanding example was when I was required to educate more individuals in the neighborhood about the dangers, risk factors, and health complications of obesity. The prepared teaching plan guided, sensitized, and informed more beneficiaries about the issues associated with obesity, triggered a positive response from the selected community members, and revealed my strengths in communication, teamwork, and critical thinking skills.
Summary of Teaching Plan
The selected health issue for the teaching experience was obesity. This medical condition affects over 27 percent of American citizens (Fooladi, 2015). It is a risk factor for various diseases, such as diabetes, stroke, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and cancer (Tremmel et al., 2017). A succinct summary of the developed teaching plan is presented below.
- Sensitize community members about obesity and the health complications associated with it.
- Encourage and guide more beneficiaries to engage in physical exercises and eat healthily.
Medical experts measure body mass index (BMI) to examine if a patient is obese or overweight. Individuals with a BMI of 25-30 will be overweight while those who are above 30 are obese (Fooladi, 2015). Leading causes of this medical issue include a sedentary lifestyle and intake of foods rich in fats and carbohydrates. A lifestyle change can reduce the chances of developing a medical condition. It is one of the leading causes of cancers, diabetes, and hypertension. Beneficiaries will acquire this information and learn more about the importance of engaging in exercises.
The primary methods will include the use of educational campaigns targeting individuals in different areas. Pamphlet will be essential to provide additional ideas to more people (Tremmel et al., 2017). Members of the community will be encouraged to share their observations and insights with their friends, relatives, and neighbors.
The teaching exercise is for 2 months.
The success of the process is to be monitored using journal entries and responses from members of the community. Such an exercise needs to be conducted throughout the selected period.
Obesity is an epidemic that poses a major predicament to the efforts put in place to manage and treat chronic conditions in the United States. Globalization practices, changing life patterns, use of machines, and sedentary lifestyles have become common features of modern societies. Most of the available foods are processed and rich in calories. From an epidemiological perspective, obesity remains a major health condition despite the fact that it is preventable. Over 35 percent of American adults are either obese or overweight (Tremmel et al., 2017). The affected individuals will find it hard to engage in economic or productive activities.
This medical condition is associated with the increasing number of citizens suffering from diabetes and different cancer types. Consequently, more people are dying prematurely in the country, thereby affecting the economic experiences and wellbeing of their respective relatives (Tremmel et al., 2017). The provision of a timely and personalized teaching plan will educate more individuals about obesity and how they can overcome the challenges associated with it.
With the designed plan and content in place, I was able to form a team of four licensed nurses to launch the intended campaign successfully. The professionals managed to educate over 300 citizens in the selected neighborhood. This achievement was possible since we managed to select 10 different locations across the community. This experience was memorable since the majority of the people were willing to be part of the exercise (Fooladi, 2015). Some individuals requested additional pamphlets and ideas regarding the facts of obesity as an epidemic. The participants remained responsive and asked questions to learn more about this disease.
The majority of the targeted individuals were willing to learn more about the best exercises that can help them lower their BMIs. Personally, I seized the opportunity to provide clear instructions and guidelines to the targeted community members. They learned more about the importance of jogging, taking long walks, and walking when necessary instead of using mechanized transport (Tremmel et al., 2017). However, I had some difficulties liaising with individuals with diverse backgrounds. Fortunately, some of my colleagues were willing to be involved and support me whenever necessary. Using charts and tables, the team succeeded in demonstrating and identifying some of the best food materials and combinations that could result in a balanced diet (Fooladi, 2015). The exercise was an opportunity for me to improve my communication, decision-making, and critical thinking competencies.
The coordination, involvement, and willingness of the team members encouraged most of the identified individuals in the community to be involved in the educational process. The professionals were keen to focus on both personal and societal demands. The content was shared in such a way that all listeners were able to learn more about obesity, its possible causes, and the risk factors associated with it. The nurses remained responsive by answering questions and providing additional ideas to make it possible for the people to acquire adequate information (Fooladi, 2015). The team was keen to demonstrate and provide additional examples when necessary throughout the teaching process. The same strategy was replicated in every identified area across the community.
The identified citizens received the presented guidelines and ideas for leading a better lifestyle in a positive manner. The majority of them affirmed that they were ready to change their diets and avoid leading sedentary lives. They appreciated the fact that obesity was a leading determinant of a person’s quality of life (Tremmel et al., 2017). The request for more materials and pamphlets was a clear indication that the individuals were willing to overcome this health burden. After completing the teaching exercise, we observed that most of the beneficiaries were willing to follow the presented guidelines. Such actions were capable of changing the community’s overall health.
Areas of Strength and Improvement
The completed exercise made it easier for me to understand some of my strengths that made me a competent provider of personalized instructions and information that could improve the health experiences of the beneficiary. The first area that stood out was that of teamwork. My colleagues and I were able to develop the best teaching plan and utilize it to deliver the right content to the community members. The second one is that of critical thinking. As a medical professional, I have been working on this skill to remain prepared for possible challenges and issues that might arise in my workplace and community. Such a strength continues to guide me whenever providing care and support to different patients depending on their medical expectations (Fooladi, 2015). The third ability that emerged from the educational experience was that of communication. Throughout the exercise, I was able to pose questions and respond accordingly. I combined the use of verbal and non-verbal methods to meet the demands of the community members.
However, some weaknesses emerged from the teaching experience that should be improved. First, I realized that sometimes I could become nervous when providing instructions to a group of more than 20 people. However, I am convinced that such an area could be changed by taking part in additional exercises and remaining involved (Tremmel et al., 2017). Second, I observed that my time management skills were less developed. On some of the campaign days, I realized that I arrived late, thereby undermining the overall success of the exercise. I am planning to consider the power of journal entries and time plans whenever undertaking similar tasks. After addressing these areas of weakness, I believe that I will become more responsible and capable of succeeding as a medical practitioner.
The above discussion has described how nurses can complete additional roles to increase the health outcomes of different people in their respective hospitals and communities. The prepared teaching plan guided, sensitized, and informed more beneficiaries about the medical issues associated with obesity. Most of the individuals in the community responded positively and were willing to transform their lifestyles. I will consider the importance of addressing my areas of weakness to become more proficient and meet the demands of more beneficiaries in the future.
Fooladi, M. M. (2015). The role of nurses in community awareness and preventive health. International Journal Community Based Nurse Midwifery, 3(4), 328-329. Web.
Tremmel, M., Gerdtham, U., Nilsson, P. M., & Saha, S. (2017). Economic burden of obesity: a systematic literature review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(4), 435-452. Web.