Community Health: The Backbone of a Healthy Society

"We need community action and policies to support healthy communities"- Mark Hyman

Hello again! The months are flying by and fourth year will soon be over and I cannot believe it. I've recently completed a rotation in Orthopedics which I must admit was quite exhilarating, informative and very hands on; something which I enjoy. There will be a post on my Orthopedics rotation at a later date. A week and a half has elapsed since Orthopedics and I've spent that time in a new rotation-Community Health. 

When looking at Community Health it is easy to think that it'll be a walk in the park or one of the easier clerkships mainly because you'll be in the clinic settings for most of it or possibly getting the opportunity to perfect and master vital skills such as history taking and physical examination. Well that's what I thought anyways; however, that's not all that it entails-well not in its entirety. 

The Community Health clerkship takes us out of the hospital ward setting and allows us to explore the various components of the health services. As a requirement for the clerkship we're engaged in research as well, which means that we have carded teaching sessions on statistics and how to professionally, effectively and appropriately approach medical research and of course we're granted the opportunity to perfect our teamwork skills which will be essential once life as an intern begins. 

In the first week, we were oriented to the clerkship and given an introduction to Public and Community Health as well as an introduction to the research project and the expectations for the rotation. Fortunately for us, we were able to decide amongst ourselves and under the guidance of one of the assistant Doctors who specializes in research, on our topic.

It is common knowledge that the function of the Physician is to alleviate the suffering of their patients and to prevent disability, premature death and to promote the health of the individual, families and in turn the community. In order to fulfill this professional mission, general practitioners must have clinical competence in defining and managing the health problems of their patients as well as a broad understanding and appreciation of the socioeconomic and cultural environment which determine the pattern and dynamics of the health of the communities they serve and to be able to efficiently work in the reality of the Health Care Systems. The next few weeks will allow observation, participation and assistance in the delivery of comprehensive health care to various communities throughout New Providence and one of several Family Islands that make up The Bahamas.

To say the least, I'm looking forward to the change of scenery and the new dynamics that this clerkship will allow.

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