Communicable diseases are illnesses that are spread from one person to another or from an animal to a person. These diseases can cause severe health problems and even death if not detected and treated promptly. Epidemiology and nursing research are essential tools in the fight against communicable diseases. In this paper, we will apply the concepts of epidemiology and nursing research to a communicable disease. We will refer to the “Communicable Disease Chain,” “Chain of Infection,” and the CDC website to complete this assignment. The communicable disease we will focus on is COVID-19, a disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that emerged in Wuhan, China, in December 2019.
Epidemiology and COVID-19
Epidemiology is the study of the distribution and determinants of health and disease in populations. Epidemiology helps identify patterns and risk factors for communicable diseases. Epidemiologists study how a disease is spread, who is most likely to get infected, and how to prevent and control the disease. Epidemiology also provides evidence for public health interventions and policy decisions.
COVID-19 is a highly contagious disease that spreads through respiratory droplets when an infected person talks, coughs, or sneezes. Epidemiologists use various tools to track and monitor the spread of the disease. They use mathematical models to estimate the number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. They also conduct contact tracing to identify people who have been in close contact with an infected person.
Epidemiologists have identified several risk factors for COVID-19, including age, underlying health conditions, and certain occupations. Older adults and people with chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity, are at higher risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19. Health care workers, first responders, and essential workers who cannot work from home are also at higher risk of exposure to the virus.
Epidemiologists have recommended several measures to prevent and control the spread of COVID-19. These include wearing masks, practicing social distancing, washing hands frequently, and avoiding large gatherings. They have also recommended vaccination as an effective tool to prevent COVID-19 and its complications.
Nursing Research and COVID-19
Nursing research is essential in the prevention, management, and treatment of communicable diseases. Nursing research provides evidence-based practices that promote the health and well-being of individuals and communities. Nurses play a critical role in preventing and controlling the spread of communicable diseases, including COVID-19.
Nursing research on COVID-19 has focused on several areas, including infection control, symptom management, and patient outcomes. Nurses have developed and implemented infection control protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in healthcare settings. They have also provided patient education on the importance of hand hygiene, social distancing, and mask-wearing to prevent the spread of the virus.
Nursing research has also focused on symptom management for COVID-19 patients. Nurses have developed and implemented protocols for managing symptoms such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath. They have also provided emotional support for patients and families affected by COVID-19.
Finally, nursing research has focused on patient outcomes for COVID-19 patients. Nurses have collected data on patient outcomes, such as hospitalization rates, length of stay, and mortality rates. They have also evaluated the effectiveness of treatments such as antiviral medications, oxygen therapy, and mechanical ventilation.
Communicable Disease Chain and Chain of Infection
The communicable disease chain and chain of infection are essential concepts in understanding the transmission of communicable diseases. The communicable disease chain consists of six elements: infectious agent, reservoir, portal of exit, mode of transmission, portal of entry, and susceptible host.