Health Seeking Behaviors of Appalachian Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

15).

Furthermore, and despite its popularity as a tourist destination because of its natural beauty, the Appalachians are not a sterile environment by any means and the people who live there have higher risks for certain types of conditions than their counterparts elsewhere. According to Bauer and Growick (2003), "Americans who live in Appalachia experience unique and different ways of life than most Americans. Appalachian culture runs from the bottom half of the State of New York through the mountains of West Virginia and Southeast Ohio to the flatlands of Alabama. This area of the country offers different perspectives and challenges to life. Because of the geographical vastness and uniqueness of the Appalachian culture, many people with disabilities who live in Appalachia are unable to access rehabilitative services and agencies" (emphasis added) (p. 18).

Likewise, many rural residents throughout Appalachia may have septic tanks and will lack access to other city-provided services that their urban and suburban counterparts take for granted. These environmental threats may introduce some types of maladies that will require emergent care. In this regard, Barrett, Hackler, Highfill, Huang, Monti, and Peipins (2002) report that, "Pathogens such as Norwalk-like viruses, Campylobacter jejuni, and Ciardia lamblia have been documented as causes of gastroenteritis among campers and hikers. An outbreak of gastrointestinal illness occurred among hikers on the Appalachian Trail in Virginia during May and June 1999" (p. 18). These researchers determined that the proximity of a septic tank to a small retail store's water supply was the source of the outbreak, and recommend educating the local populace and visitors concerning the need to purify water when the source is doubtful (Barrett et al., 2002).

Summary and Conclusion

The research showed that understanding why, when and where people typically seek out healthcare services can help practitioners improve the delivery of these services when and where they are most needed. Although stereotypes are dangers, the research also showed that many of the residents of Appalachia remain at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts in other pats of parts of the country, particularly in economic and health care terms. The research also showed that there remains a paucity of research specifically targeted at identifying those health seeking behaviors that characterize that region of the United States known as Appalachia. The double bias of being a disabled person as well as being a member of a minority group, such as living in rural Appalachia, creates some profound issues in the delivery of health services throughout this region of America. The studies reviewed were consistent in identifying the Appalachian culture as one that stresses pride, independence and a sense of self-reliance that will undoubtedly influence the decision-making processes for many of these residents, and the initiatives used to date have been too few and in some cases, too late to make any difference in how these residents perceive the adequacy and need for timely health care services.

References

Anguiano, R.P., & Harrison, S.M. (2002). Teaching cultural diversity to college students majoring in helping professions: The use of an eco-strengths perspective. College Student Journal, 36(1), 152.

Barrett, E., Hackler, R., Highfill, K.A., Huang, P., Jiang, X., Monti, M.M., & Peipins, Lucy. (2002). A Norwalk-like virus outbreak on the Appalachian Trail. Journal of Environmental Health, 64(9), 18.

Bauer, W., & Growick, B.M. (2003). Rehabilitation counseling in Appalachian America. The Journal of Rehabilitation, 69(3), 18.

Brown, J.W., & May, B.A. (2005, April). Rural Appalachian women's formal patterns of care. Southern Online Journal of Nursing Research, (2)6, 1-21.

Coyne, C.A., Demian-Popescu, C., & Friend, D. (2006). Social and cultural factors influencing health in southern West Virginia: a qualitative study. Preventing Chronic Disease, 3(4), 37.

Giffords, E.D., Guercia, R., Kass, D., Weiss, D.M., & Wenze, L. (2005). Increasing access to health care: Examination of hospital community benefits and free care programs. Health and Social Work, 30(3), 213.

Jesse, D.E., & Reed, P.G. (2004, November). Effects of spirituality and psychosocial well- being on health risk behaviors in Appalachian pregnant women.…

Sources Used in Document:

References

Anguiano, R.P., & Harrison, S.M. (2002). Teaching cultural diversity to college students majoring in helping professions: The use of an eco-strengths perspective. College Student Journal, 36(1), 152.

Barrett, E., Hackler, R., Highfill, K.A., Huang, P., Jiang, X., Monti, M.M., & Peipins, Lucy. (2002). A Norwalk-like virus outbreak on the Appalachian Trail. Journal of Environmental Health, 64(9), 18.

Bauer, W., & Growick, B.M. (2003). Rehabilitation counseling in Appalachian America. The Journal of Rehabilitation, 69(3), 18.

Brown, J.W., & May, B.A. (2005, April). Rural Appalachian women's formal patterns of care. Southern Online Journal of Nursing Research, (2)6, 1-21.

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