Vulnerable Populations Essay

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Vulnerable Populations A vulnerable population is a group of people who are susceptible or exposed to anything that threatens their health and/or well-being. Vulnerability can be short, long or indefinite depending on the risk. Short-term may be an illness such as influenza, long-term may be homelessness, and indefinite are diseases like cancer, diabetes, and congestive heart failure. Immigration is another example of a vulnerable population. Many people from other countries come to United States in hopes of raising their family in freedom, better economic standards, and employment and healthcare opportunities. Immigrants have escaped unwanted living conditions in their country to come to United States and become susceptible to other unfortunate living conditions. Undocumented immigrants build their own community within a community. They seclude and protect themselves, their children, and other family members from being exposed to law enforcement in hopes of preventing deportation. Immigrants are subjected to, Androff et al (2011) stated, “economic insecurity, barriers to education, poor health outcomes, the arrest and deportation of family members, discrimination, and trauma and harm to their communities” (p.77). Language barriers, culture and education are also barriers to services. Immigrants are unsure of places they can go for refuge. As a nurse, I have taken care of many undocumented Latino immigrants. Most of the time, they do not come to the health center until their illness is extremely painful and/or life threatening. It is not because they do not care about their health, but fearful of the consequences of being in this country without proper paperwork. As a government funded health center, we do not report to immigration, and we welcome anyone with or without citizenship or insurance. I have taken care of many elderly patients with co-morbidities.

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