The assessment of communities remains to be an important activity since community needs are addressed based on assessments. Here we are going to assess a town named Union City located in the Hudson county and the State of New Jersey. The assessments are going to be subdivided into several areas mentioned below.
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Race and Ethnicity
In this category six race groups are specified. The race groups include: Hispanic Origin, African American, Caucasian, Asian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian, also known as Pacific Islander. According to the 2000 Census the sample sizes for the races were the following: 55,226 Hispanic Origin; 2,442 African Americans; 39,167 Caucasian; 1,411 Asians; 467 Alaska Native; 54 Native Hawaiian and 18,911 of some other races. This means that the Hispanic community had the largest number in the population (Heyer, Gruel and Associates, 2009).
Age is calculated by subtracting the date that an individual was born from the reference date, which in most cases is the date of the interview or the date of contact with the individual at hand. The population was distributed into three age groups and different age groups had different number of individuals (Prieto, 2009). The distribution is as follows: Under 1 year-3,795,000; 1-4 years-15,192,000; 5-14 years-39,977,000; 15-24 years-38,077,000; 25-34 years-37, 233,000; 35-44 years-44, 659,000; 45-54 years-37,030,000; 55-64 years-23,961,000;65-74 years-18,136,000;75-84 years-12,315,000;85 years and over-4,259,000 (Central for Disease Control and Prevention, 2015). From the statistics, the largest age group is that of the age bracket of 35-44 year.
According to statistics carried out in 2007, the leading cause of death around this town is heart disease. Cancer is the second cause that also contributed to most deaths since one quarter of all the deaths recorded were caused by heart disease and 23% were caused by cancer. The infant mortality rate was found to be 6.75 infant deaths per 1,000 live births. This was a decline of 2% from what was recorded in 2000 (Central for Disease Control and Prevention, 2015).
Causes of Death
Heart disease has been the leading cause of death in this town. The leading cause of death among children 1-14 years of age was unintentional injuries. The same unintentional injuries accounted for almost half of the deaths among persons aged between 15-24 years. Between the year 1997 and the year 2007 the unintentional injury death rate increased by 5% in this age bracket and the estimated figure was 37 deaths per 100,000 of the population (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014).
On the other hand, the leading cause of death for adults aged between 45-64 years was cancer. It accounted for more than one third of the deaths in this age bracket. The cancer death rate decreased by 14% between the year 1997 and 2007 (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014). The estimated figure was 200 deaths per 100,000 of population. Another cause of death was motor-vehicle traffic deaths. They were not so rampant and they were ranging from 31 per 100,000 of population to 7 per 100,000 of population (Prieto, 2009).
Birth Rates and Fertility
Teenagers aged between the ages of 15-19 had a birth rate of 41.5 live births per 1,000 females. This was a fall by 2% and this statistics were based on the year 2008.The birth rates among teenagers fell by 34% from the year 1991 to the year 2005. High birth rates among teenagers were associated with low birth weight where we find infants who weigh less than 2.5 kilograms (5.5 pounds) at birth (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014). This problem of low birth weight is associated with disability among infants and it also causes deaths among infants. In the year 2008 the low birth weight rate was 8.2%, which was the same as in the year 2007, and this was also an increase of 18% since the year 1990 (The State and County, NJ, 2014).
It is described as the occurrence of death during the first year of life. Some of the causes of infant mortality include; poor health conditions of the mother to the child, poor or unsupportive health practices, unfavourable social economic conditions and also limited access to health facilities by the pregnant women in good time for delivery and care. The infant mortality rate was 6.75 per 1,000 live births in 2007.Actually this was a decrease of 7% as compared to what it was in the year 1997 (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014).
Neonatal mortality rate refers to the deaths of infants under 28 days of age. In the same year, 2007 the neonatal mortality rate was 4.41 per 1,000 live births which was a decrease of 8%. On the other hand, post-neonatal mortality rate refers to deaths of infants aged between 28 days to 11 months. In 2007, the post-neonatal mortality rate was found to be2.33 per 1,000 births which was a 5% decrease (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014). Some of the leading causes of these problems include sudden infant death syndrome and congenital malformations. It was also noted that there were disparities in infant mortality rates by race and Hispanic origin of the mothers (The State and County, NJ, 2014).
It largely depend the minimum money income that varies with family size and composition. Those individuals and families that have income that is below this threshold are said to live below the poverty line. Statistics were taken for an average poverty threshold of a family with four members. In the year 2009, it was $22,128, in the year 2008 it was $22,025, in the year 2000 it was found to be $17,603 and finally in the year 1990 it was found to be $13,359 (The State and County, NJ, 2014).
A family is defined as all people within a household that are either related by blood, adoption or marriage. On the other hand, family income can be defined as the total income that is received by members of a family within a span of 12 months before the interview is undertaken (National Center for Health Statistics, 2014).
Families are able to obtain their incomes from salaries and wages for those of them who are employed, rents from their own property, dividends and profits, interest rates, fees from operating businesses, grants, and pensions and also income from relatives. It is through these means that families belonging to this town are able to earn their income and afford both their basic and secondary needs (The State and County, NJ, 2014).
In this town, most of the people use drugs. The commonly used drugs here are marijuana and cigarettes. Due to this there is emergence of chronic diseases such as cancer, which is one of major causes of death of this town. On the other hand, many people here are obese and overweight. This tends to explain why there are diseases such as diabetes and heart diseases, which are a major cause of death among the people in this town (National Centre for Health Statistics, 2014).
Healthcare problems in Union City
In the past 20 years there has been a remarkable increase in community interest in the prevention of the deterioration of health and death in the United States, particularly in Union City, New Jersey. This is as a result of the changing individual behaviours which is linked to risks of the contraction of chronic and unending illnesses (Centre for disease control and prevention, 2015). This improved interest in the promotion of disease prevention, however has not renewed without its critics.
A number of these critics have blamed advocates of life-style involvements in the promotion of a victim-blaming principle by abandoning the significance of social influences on disease and health. Most Union City residents would have same opinion that health care improvement needs to take place, however, a new health care system would necessitate a well-laid structure and would also need funding. One of the problems faced by residents of Union City is immigration.
This has a large negative impact on the health of many individuals in the city. There is limited access to healthcare by the immigrants, a factor that leads to the spread and deterioration of health among the city’s population. Problems such as lack of awareness and ignorance have also contributed to the deterioration of health among the city’s people and in the entire state of New Jersey in general.
Possible actions to address to the health problem issue
The local public health authorities of New Jersey have began a strategic and county-wide public health planning program, which has managed to engage many of both private and public associates. These community-level based corporations have been able to produce county-wide Community Health Improvement Plans on the basis of reviewing many sources of existing facts and figures with the results of wide community health evaluations and discussions.
The public health corporations have started putting into operation certain suggestions for addressing the main concerns which were identified in their individual reports through workgroup creation, leveraging and improving on all ready existing health schemes. Monetary support from New Jersey for the accomplishment phase of MAPP was made available through NJ SHARE (Sharing Available Resources Efficiently) Program (National Centre for Health Statistics, 2014).
In addition, the health commissioner of New Jersey, Mary E. O’Dowd allocated $13.5 million funding to health centres across communities in New Jersey including the Union City community. Both maternal and child wellbeing conglomerate, New Jersey’s health subdivisions’ and social services’ groups to ensure all women have the access to all the services they require to maintain a healthy lifestyle have been set up in order to deal with healthcare improvement in the area (Center for disease control and prevention, 2015).