Running head: WINDSHIELD SURVEY
The community the student nurse chose to observe is Olton, Texas. It is a small town of 2,112 people located in the panhandle of Texas. In this paper, the student nurse is going to analyze things they observed in the town and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of Olton along with improvements that can be made as a community.
The boundaries of the selected community are: Avenue A to Avenue I and 1st street to 15th street within the community. The town community occupies around 1200 acres and is surrounded by farms and ranches.
From east to west the housing conditions improve. On the east side there was a home with wood siding. The yard in front has dead grass and a run down car. Another home observed on the east side is a trailer home. There is no other homes beside this trailer house. It also is on land with dead grass. On the west side there is a brick home that is two stories. The home has a garage attached and had nicer vehicles outside. Another home observed on the west side is another brick house, one story, with a nicely groomed yard with a permanent basketball goal in the driveway. Of the four houses three of them had central heating, air conditioning, and modern plumbing.
There are only two large open spaces within the selected area. One of the open areas is located behind the co-op. There is equipment for farming laying on the ground. It is a fairly large area that is caliche. The space seems to be used by the co-op. The other open area is located on the other side of the city park. There are two homes located on the open area. The area seems to be well kept and may belong to the homeowners. Both of the areas seem safe.
Modes of Transportation
The nursing student observed four different kinds of vehicles. The student observed a school bus picking children up. The student observed a suburban dropping off children at school. The student nurse also observed a very beat up pickup at the local convenience store. The last vehicle observed was a company truck driving through town.
The student observed many different types of stores. The first observed was a gas station. The next was a flower shop. The student observed two boutiques. There were three family owned restaurants and one large chain fast food place. The one grocery store in the community had a going out of business sign out front.
Social Service Centers
The elementary, middle, and high school are all located in the same area but all have different buildings. There are several baseball fields and one football field. There are five churches within the community. There is a city park with a very large playground, pond with ducks and fish, and basketball courts. There is also an Ag pavilion where the community could hold fundraisers or meetings.
The community has a local clinic with an attached pharmacy. There is a local emergency medical system with two ambulances. There is also a chiropractic office. There are two nursing homes within the community.
The student observed many different types of people. However, they are only going to discuss four. The first person observed was an older gentleman that walked with a slow gait and was stooped over walking into one of the local restaurants. The man had on jeans, boots, a button up, and a hat. The man drove a large pickup. The second person observed was a middle-aged Hispanic man with dirty jeans and a shirt. He drove a beat up pickup with farm equipment in the back. He seemed to be a farm hand.The third person observed was a Hispanic woman dressed in jeans and a t-shirt picking up groceries from the local store. The final person observed was a middle-aged woman dropping her children off at school.
As previously discussed there is a park. There is a local gin and co-op that provides much of the work within the community. There is a locally owned welding company. Many of the small businesses often provide work for the community. There are many homes around the community.
There is a post office, police station, and fire station within the community. The fire station and emergency medical system are run by volunteers from the community. There is a city hall located by the police station.
Community Health needs
The first need of the community is a local grocery store. Since the current grocery store is closing the residents of the community will have to drive over twenty miles to get basic necessities like groceries. This can place many of the residents at risk for malnutrition because much of the community are farm hands that cannot afford to drive the distance. Not only that but if the community has an emergency such as a tornado then there is no way for the community to stock up on goods. The second need of the community would be a place such as a boys and girls club. Many of the children need somewhere in the community to play other than the park. Although the student believes that the community is on a good track with the healthcare services provided, there are many young families with children. The third goal is for the community to obtain a pediatrician to care for the children. The fourth goal for this community is to improve the involvement of the farming community in their own health. Many of the people in the farming community wait until it is too late to seek medical assistance. Many of them have comorbidities that need long term care. There may be a need for a home health nurse or community nurse to travel out to these residents and teach them about their comorbidities.
Goals for Community
Reduce the amount of deaths related to comorbidies such as heart failure and diabetes by ten percent in ten years.
Strengths and Weaknesses of the Community
A strength of this community is the strong sense of community. Many of the residents seemed to know each other and worked together. This is great because if a crisis were to happen then the community would come together to help each other. Another strength is the initiation of new healthcare services. The community recently added a chiropractic office. A weakness of the community is the proximity to a hospital. The residents have to drive twenty minutes to the nearest hospital. The residents are also going to have to drive twenty minutes or more to the nearest grocery store.
In my personal opinion, Olton is on a good track to becoming a healthy community. The big need I believe is to initiate programs that involve the community in their own health. Some of the ways this can happen is that a community health nurse could coordinate some screening programs at the ag pavilion and follow up with the residents who have comorbidities. In the next few years I believe that Olton will improve as a community.
Stanhope, M & Lancaster, J (2013). Foundations of Nursing in the Community: Community Oriented Practice. (4th ed.). Elsevier