Societal Infrastructure and Community Nursing

Author: Daniel Ku

I focused on the UN Sustainable Development Goal #9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation. (UN General Assembly, 2018). As I walked through the streets of Chester, I came to notice that the city was very walkable: everything from the local clothing stores to the supermarkets were within a 2-kilometer radius, with the distribution of the stores being spread out to each cover the more rural areas. There was a lot of visible social infrastructure, from shops dedicated to donating part of their revenue to care (e.g. For The Kids) to donation bins for food and old items at the exits in every Tesco (popular supermarket) we visited. One of the nursing students mentioned that Chester was the “more posh” area within Cheshire, and the coverage and abundance of the stores reflected that status. He mentioned that where he lived, the drug use problem was higher and the concept of a “food desert” was visible. Interestingly enough, the Chester students stated that tap water was safe to drink and nearly everyone drank out of the tap, with some exceptions in nuclear or waste zones. Compared to the US’ limitation primarily being distribution of food, he stated that the food deserts here were caused by stretched supplies of essential products and over-reliance on food imports. Thus, the more economically viable locations received a substantially higher variety and quality of food, as well as access to and development of social infrastructure.

The communities that have better inclusivity and sustainable innovation tend to have a better chance at attracting workers and companies. More workers mean growing population, and more companies equate to economic viability and increased necessity of social infrastructure. How the nurses in the community treat patients and innovate methods of care directly affects the social infrastructure of a town/city: within Chester, availability of food banks, safe houses for sexual abuse victims, and coordination of localized care were connected with various resources, connected with the help of countless community nurses who played a vital part in starting these programs, advocating for these programs, and implementing them where they were needed most. By surveying areas for local health organizations, looking at infrastructure inequality, and advocating for needed programs, the nurse in the community can promote innovative solutions and increase inclusivity with health in the population and industries, leading to viable, sustainable, and resilient infrastructure.

 

References

United Nations General Assembly. (2018). SDG Goal 9: Responsible consumption,

production. Retrieved from https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdg9

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