Social Epidemiology

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Book Chapter

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Epidemiology for the Advanced Practice Nurse: A Population Health Approach


Social epidemiology strives to provide a framework to examine how social factors, such as social relationships, poverty, racial issues, social inequalities, social capital, and work stress impact the health of individuals and populations. Social epidemiologists identify the social characteristics that impact the distribution and pattern of disease occurrence in a population as a means to develop programs that improve the health of individuals, populations, and eventually society as a whole. The nursing assessment is an important element of epidemiologic data collection. During the nursing assessment, nurses collect information on many of the social and lifestyle factors that impact an individual’s health. Additionally, nurses collect data on social networks and family relationships. Nurses must remain aware of the status of the population’s health within a community and ensure that the nurse collects specific social health data as a component of the nursing assessment.

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Epidemiology For The Advanced Practice Nurse: A Population Health Approach