Uncanny supernatural power, supreme good looks, great moral ethics, does that sound familiar? Marvel and DC comics (which I love by the way) has really given us a great blueprint for how a Superhero should look. Have you wondered if you could be a real-life Superhero? Just think, what would your life look like, if your job title was Superhero?! What would you be doing? What would be your superpower? Well, there is a career where many superheroes work, but we go by our alias name of Public Health Nurses. And just like our Marvel and DC counterparts, we too remain hidden until the world needs us.
Promote. Prevent. Protect. Treat.
Public health nurses promote health, prevent diseases, protect communities, and treat illnesses. Their main goal is ensuring that we have healthy individuals in healthy communities. They are active and remain active in the communities that they serve, instead of waiting for patients to come to them. They bring critical expertise to every aspect of life ranging from the individual level to system level. But what truly makes us special is that we are the font line when disaster strikes. Public health nurses are vital to the world when unexpected pandemics or natural disasters hit. The skills we offer include but are not limited to disease investigation, mass prophylaxis and treatment, outreach, advocacy, needs assessment, public health triage, and policy development.
Educate. Educate. And Educate Some More
With a population health focus, public health nurses’ primary efforts are geared towards education, but they really are a jack-of-all-trades. Public health nurses teach family members how to care for loved ones who may be ill, demonstrate several safety practices such as modeling how to insert an infant car seat properly, and encourage the community to get tested and screened for conditions like high blood pressure or HIV. Their goal is to educate people in a way that empowers them to make informed decisions about their health.
Where is Our Hideout?
Unlike Clark Kent or Bruce Wayne, we wear our capes for our day jobs, for when a hurricane hits and we must be deployed to that area, or for when an outbreak occurs and we must immediately set up shop to test, quarantine and treat. We are here every day, committed to serving not only our community but the world. You can find us at your local or major non-profit organizations such as Red Cross or a community-based organization, governmental agencies such as local/state health departments and federal health agencies, community clinics, and school systems, just to name a few. So again, I ask, do you want to be a Superhero?
-By Latronda Davis