Nursing 451

NURS 451: Community Health Nursing

Prerequisites: NURS 443, NURS 444 and NURS 448

Credit Hours: (5) Three hours lecture; six hours practicum

Focuses on client/environment interactions incorporating clinical experiences with diverse populations in a variety of community settings and with individuals, families, aggregates, and communities.

Note(s): When NURS 451 is offered in the summer, it is open to Registered Nurse students only.


Detailed Description of Content of the Course

The objectives and content of this Level 4 Course are derived from the School of Nursing’s philosophy and conceptual framework and the AACN Essentials for Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice, and facilitate achievement of the School’s program objectives to include community-based nursing practice. Additionally, the major topics and skills covered in this course are common to major leadership and professional development nursing textbooks, and represent areas covered on standardized achievement examinations and the NCLEX-RN Test Plan. Current research and advancement in theory and clinical practice also determine content.

1. Community Assessment
        a. Community structure and function
        b. Frameworks, methodologies, and tools for standardizing data collection and analysis and reporting
        c. Culturally sensitive community partnerships
        d. Data information sources
2. Principles of epidemiology
        a. Morbidity and mortality
        b. Natural history
        c. Disease control and surveillance
        d. Screening
        e. Clinical decision making
3. Providing a safe and healthy environment
        a. Health policy
        b. Regulatory Processes (OSHA, CDC)
        c. Methods/tools for data collection/analysis
        d. Injury registries/ergonomics
        e. Program planning
        f.  Bioterrorism
        g. Domestic violence
        h. Abuse and exploitation of children, elderly and disabled
4. Measuring performance, effectiveness, and outcomes of health services
        a. Comprehensive health planning/Healthy People
        b. Identify assets and gaps in service structure
        c. Health status indicators
        d. Effectiveness of interventions
        e. Accessibility and quality of individual and population-wide health services
5. Promoting Healthy Communities
        a.    Evolution of the US health care system and community nursing and how these affect the health of communities.
        b.    Effective use of the media to encourage both personal and community responsibility for informed decision making
        c.    Public awareness/marketing campaigns/Health Fairs
        d.    Mobilizing the community for action
        e.    Ethical issues of social justice and individual versus aggregate rights
6. Providing targeted outreach and forming partnerships
        a. Global/international health care
        b. Capitalizing on cultural diversity
        c. Working with vulnerable populations
7. Providing health care services for high risk aggregates that threaten the health of the community
        a. Primary health care
        b. Preventive health services

Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

The following teaching strategies may be employed, but are not limited to:
•    Lectures, discussion, multimedia, case studies, and guided clinical practice.

Goals and Objectives of the Course

Upon successful completion of the course, the student will be able to:
1. Apply scientific principles of nursing knowledge in partnership with individuals, families, and aggregates in order to improve the health of the population.
2. Discuss the historical evolution of the U.S. public health care system and community oriented-nursing and their influence on the health of individuals, families, and population aggregates.
3. Perform theory and evidence based therapeutic nursing interventions within the scope of community health nursing practice.
4. Apply principles of epidemiology, community health organization, and health policy to provide a safe and healthy environment.
5. Recognize and intervene in the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of children, elderly, and disabled clients encountered in the community.
6. Access inter-professional and intra-professional resources to resolve ethical and other practice dilemmas and exhibit accountability for care delivery in various community settings.
7. Collaborate with community members and other members of the health care team to implement culturally sensitive, holistic care for population aggregates that reflects an understanding of the multi-dimensional aspects of community health nursing across the health-illness continuum, across the lifespan and in all community healthcare settings.
8. Advocate for consumers and communities on a regional, state, national and global level to influence health care policy and promote the health of populations and the advancement of nursing practice.
9. Utilize effective written, oral, and nonverbal communication skills in collaboration with community members and other health professionals to improve the health of individuals, families and populations
10. Utilize knowledge and skills in health care and information technologies to support a safe community environment for individuals, families, population aggregates, and health care workers.
11. Evidence commitment to lifelong learning to support excellence in community nursing practice and foster professional growth and development

Assessment Measures

May include but not limited to :

• Exams; Quizzes
• Paper
• Project, Individual or Group
• Care Plan
• Oral Presentations
• Class Participation

The course grade is determined by an evaluation of the extent to which the student meets the stated course objectives. Students must have a minimum of 80% (“C”) in theory, measured through testing. Other written or class participation work will be included in the final grade after the minimum 80% (“C”) has been attained through testing.

Final Grades are a combination of at least 80% (“C”) on both theory and graded clinical/lab components. Clinical/lab performance must be satisfactory to pass the course.

Other Course Information

Honor Code: By accepting admission to Radford University, each student makes a commitment to understand, support, and abide by the University Honor Code without compromise or exception. Violations of academic integrity will not be tolerated. This class will be conducted in strict observance of the Honor Code. Refer to your Student Handbook for details and/or the web site.

Students with Disabilities: If you are seeking classroom accommodations under the Americans With Disabilities Act, you are required to register with the Disability Resource Office (DRO). The DRO website is or email or telephone 540-831-6350. To receive academic accommodations for this class, please obtain the proper DRO forms and meet with course faculty no later than the second week of the semester.
Attendance: For Attendance policies and other course-related requirements, see School of Nursing Undergraduate Student Handbook and Course Description.

Review and Approval

Date Action Reviewed by
February 2011, Kim Carter, Director