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Social Determinants and Disease Development
       Social determinants of health are conditions in which a person is born in to – social, economic and physical conditions to include resources and daily needs, biases, crime and violence statistics, community support, availability of sending and receiving communication, education quality and community, etc., each impacts an individuals daily activities, health, wellness and evidence of disease.  Individual behaviors will also support or not, the chain of events that lead to health or illness.  Although many circumstances may prevent wellness, it is up to the individual how these circumstances will impact their life.
Chain of Infection
       The chain of infection is comprised of six units; the infectious agent or the germ; the reservoir or where the pathogen lives; portal of exit, why and how the infectious agent exits it reservoir; mode of transmission, how it is passed on; portal of entry, how the infectious agent enters its new host; and the susceptible host which can be any person or animal.
How the Community Health Nurse Can Break the Chain of Infection
       Community nurses and education are at the center of breaking communicable disease processes from spreading, surveillance of and prevention.  In order to stop the infectious agent from spreading it is imperative to break the link of transmission.  Hand hygiene, vaccination, prevention of spreading an organism could include education on the importance of covering your cough or sneeze, isolate the person or persons infected, use of personal protective equipment when indicated, especially in healthcare settings, utilizing antibiotics wisely.  At home and beyond, maintain and clean your home especially the high use areas such as countertops, faucets, light switches, bathroom surfaces, keyboards or cell phones, doorknobs or the steering wheel of your car.  In grocery stores, utilize the antiseptic wipes to wipe down cart handles, etc.  If you find yourself or a loved one as a patient in a hospital or clinic setting, speak up, call out anyone who enters your room to utilize hand sanitizers prior to engaging in your care.  All are ways to break the link and to prevent spread of infectious agents.
       Improve community knowledge and information of possible outbreaks and the steps needed to contain the infectious agent.  Through collaboration with local healthcare professionals, social media or television, provide hyperlinks to public health forums or available telephone numbers for social support services.  Community health nurses need to be well informed and educated in surveillance statistics of their local area in order to break the chain of infection.
Clark, M. J. (2015). Population and community health nursing (6th ed.).  Boston, MA: Pearson
     Chapter 3
Infection Prevention and You.  Break the Chain of Infection.  Retrieved from (
Prevention by Breaking the Chain of Infection.  Retrieved from (
Social Determinants of Health.  Retrieved from (

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Social determinants of health can be connected with a person’s culture. The way that a person’s culture views healthy habits can impact their health. Social determinants of health can be defined as conditions that people are born and function in (Healthy People 2020, n.d.). Some examples of social determinants are the availability to meet daily needs (Healthy People 2020, n.d.). This means that a person access to healthy food, health care, safe housing, social support, etc. (Healthy People 2020, n.d.). I believe that social determinants of health can have a major development to disease. When someone has access to clean water, air, and food it can make a difference in the spread of disease. Florence Nightingale believed in this theory as well and made sure that soldiers had access to clean water, air, and food. Nightingale found that 10 times more soldiers died of “filth disease” than died of bullets (Markel, 2017). Nightingale believed that the reason so many soldiers died was because of the filthy conditions that they were living in. These soldiers did not have access to clean conditions during the war, if these soldiers were born in these conditions, I am sure that they would find that many of them would be sick throughout their life.
            The chain of infection is how infection is spread from person to person. The reservoir is where the infection normally lives and grows (Centers for Disease Control, n.d.). These reservoirs can be environmental, human, or animal. Next in the chain is the portal of exit. This is how the infection leaves a host. A mode of transmission is how a pathogen is spread from host to host (CDC, n.d.). A portal of entry is how the infectious agent enters a host (CDC, n.d.).  The final link is to have a susceptible host (CDC, n.d.). The Center for Disease Control (n.d.) suggests that preventing the spread of infection can be done by protecting the portal of entry, increasing a host’s defenses, and finally by eliminating at transmission. A community health nurse can help break this chain by studying the different parts of the chain of infection and how to adequately stop the spread of infection. If a nurse wants to break a link in the transmission, they can protect the way that the infection is spread. For instance, when at the hospital and a patient has an infection with a disease that can be spread by direct contact, we make sure to dress in gloves and a gown to make sure that we are protecting ourselves from the spread of disease. If someone in the community has an airborne disease like tuberculosis, the community health nurse can prevent the spread of infection by making sure the infected person does not leave their house.
Centers for disease Control. (n.d.). Principles of epidemiology | Lesson 1 – Section 10. Retrieved
Healthy People 2020. (n.d.). Social determinants of health. Retrieved from


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