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Health Needs Assessment - Essay Example

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Health Needs Assessment

The Aging Network is an informal term used to describe the array of federal, state, and local government agencies established by the Older American's Act (OAA) and the community based agencies that affiliate with them in serving older adults. The OAA contains titles of relevance to long term care. "Aging Network Services can provide direction and hope, even in the most difficult of circumstances" (Aging Network Services).
"The Older Americans Act focuses on improving the lives of older people in areas of income, housing, health, employment, retirement and community services" (Older Americans Act). Due to the ever increasing number of elderly people, the focus has elaborated from community-based to long term treatment methodologies. Through the Older Americans Act, the Administration on Aging (AoA) was created. AoA is a sublet of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, which is governed by the Assistant Secretary for Aging. This can only be done if correct assessment of health care needs is there. The Administration on Aging (AoA) is connected with its nationwide network on aging composed of regional offices, to help coordinate and develop community-level systems of services that meet the unique needs of older persons and their caregivers.
"[There is a] need for rethinking criteria for hospital discharge planning, more effective communication between service providers and patients, and community focus of attention on elders coming home from the hospital" (Jones, et al, 1989). Most supportive services fall under three broad categories: Access Services, which deals with transportation and outreach, In-home Services, that concerns homemaker services, and Community Services, which is connected to dealing with adult day care and legal assistance.
"A disease-specific approach to geriatric preventive health care will not suffice; measures to enhance or maintain physical, mental and social function must also be emphasized" (Barry and Stults, 1984). Subsequently, the need for a proactive approach was felt. In this head, funds are made available to increase public understanding of how healthy lifestyle choices throughout life reduce the chances of health conditions in later years. Already it is felt that there is a dearth of research that is being put into the domain of health care services for the aging. Hence this plan is generally aimed at building knowledge, developing programs and training personnel for service in the field of aging.
As the name implies, it deals with awards and grants to provide supportive and nutrition services that are in keeping with the specific cultural needs of older Native Americans. There is a need to provide culture specific treatment, so that all needs are met. There are many needy elderly who suffer serious deficiency and are denied their basic rights and benefits, and need spirited backing on their behalf. States implement the program in different ways in response to the needs found within their states, and link their activities with related counseling and outreach programs.
"The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) was established on March 15, 1989, succeeding the Veterans Administration. It is responsible for providing federal benefits to veterans and their families" (The Department of Veteran Affairs). The Department of Veterans Affairs is one of the nation's largest health care systems and offers ...Show more

Summary

Health Care for the aging in the United States is a very elaborate and intricate system. Many factions and institutions are involved, all of whom endeavor to achieve the same aim: provision of better health care facilities for the aging. It cannot be over emphasized, as to what is the importance of providing efficient and timely health care to the elderly…
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Health Needs Assessment essay example
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