Discuss a Primary Care-Focused Visit Devoted to Wellness and or Disease Affecting Women and Health-Enhancing Strategies That You Would Include in the Visit
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If women’s needs are overlooked in these discussions, however, states lose important opportunities to improve the health of residents and gain partners in creating a healthier society. Women experience unique health care challenges and are more likely to be diagnosed with certain diseases than men. Chronic diseases and conditions—such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes—are the leading causes of death for women. Nearly half of adults—133 million people—have a chronic illness, and half of those have two or more chronic conditions. Thirty-eight percent of women suffer from one or more chronic diseases, compared to 30 percent of men. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 75 percent of all U.S. health care dollars treat people with chronic conditions. Managing chronic disease is often difficult for the uninsured, and women are more likely to lack insurance.
There are numerous gaps in our knowledge pertaining to the role and effective participation of patients in AWVs, the types and specific content of HRAs that may improve process and health outcomes, how AWVs should be structured, what resources and education clinicians and practice staff might need to make AWVs effective, how patients can be empowered to meaningfully participate, what personalized wellness plans should include and how these plans can be communicated to others, how wellness plans and care goals can be documented in a problem-oriented medical record, how practices can efficiently and appropriately respond to complex behavioral health needs emerging from AWVs, and how systematic patient follow-up can be provided to reach the goals set in AWVs (Nagykaldi ZJ, Voncken-Brewster V, 2013).
However, Epidemiologic evidence suggests that a number of other important and evidence-based preventive services, screenings, and interventions need to be a priority if the WWV of today is going to deliver on its promise to reduce a woman's risk of disease, disability, illness, and death. WWV recommendations need to continue to evolve, as epidemiologic evidence, community, and individual needs change over time. Evidence-based and timely prevention has the potential to reduce healthcare costs, disability, and death while improving the quality and quantity of women's lives. It is time for health care providers and policymakers alike to rebrand the WWV visit of today as a yearly comprehensive visit for RLP, prevention, screening, and health promotion—not just a pap smear and pelvic examination anymore.
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Nagykaldi ZJ, Voncken-Brewster V, Aspy CB, Mold JW. Novel computerized health risk appraisal may improve longitudinal health and wellness in primary care: a pilot study. Appl Clin Inform. 2013;4(1):75–87.
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