Chronic and Complex Infections

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The aim of this paper is to assess the management of chronic diseases and measures taken to curb, prevent, and educate society concerning issues of various chronic diseases. The paper attempts to highlight key factors affecting healthcare systems in the task of tackling some of the diverse and adverse chronic illnesses, as well as corrective measures that should be taken to fully develop a functional unit system. It also outlines some of the risk-associated factors in relation to public health and ways to sensitize people about various chronic diseases and how to prevent them.

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Different follow-up strategies are also discussed to provide guidelines to health organizations and the community at large.

Management of Chronic Complex Infections

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines chronic illnesses as, “diseases which have exemplified persistence and the ability to cause enduring immobility.” Some of these illnesses are compounded with irreversible conditional variations, hence they need specialized education in accordance with patient appropriate treatment or might be projected to require extended term control or administration. According to the Australian Institute of Health Welfare (AIHW), a number of chronic illnesses have adverse repercussions in many countries globally. These include meningitis, endocarditis, Lyme disease, active tuberculosis, chronic active hepatitis, pelvic inflammatory disease, septic arthritis, septicemia, necrotizing fasciitis, Dengue fever, malaria, West Nile virus, encephalitis, typhoid coronary disease among others. Many medical institutions have recognized the urgency to reduce, halt, and reverse the eminent risk of these illnesses (Scambler & Scambler, 2010).

Different measures are in place emphasizing the need to embrace, educate, and control these epidemics. In this study, we shall focus on key issues or factors that influence the prevalence of chronic illnesses, diagnostic processes and measures, emphasis on education in regards to prevention and treatments in the community, psychosocial issues, and relevant specialty recommendations.

Risk Factors for Chronic Illnesses

Risk factors of chronic ailments primarily refer to the root causes. Some of these are well-established and known. They are part of a small set of common risk factors that account for most chronic diseases. These risk factors are variable and common in both men and women; for example, an unhealthy diet, alcohol, and tobacco use. These causes are articulated through transitional risk factors such as increased blood pressure, increased glucose levels, and abnormal blood lipids among others (Scambler & Scambler, 2010). Two major types of risk factors are modifiable and non-modifiable. Non-modifiable risk factors include age and genetics, which explain the predominance of rising chronic diseases such as stroke, chronic respiratory diseases, cardiac-related diseases, heart disease, and some cancers. In contrast, modifiable risk factors include external influences and behaviors such as smoking and excessive alcohol consumption among others. These two types of risk factors, flexible and inflexible, interrelate as they often cumulatively contribute to causing chronic ailments in many countries globally (Unger & Schwartz, 2013).
Other essential risk factors known to cause chronic diseases include poverty and underlying determinant factors such as aging, socio-economic and cultural changes, and environmental influences such as pollution, among others. Major emphasis has also been put on factors related to poverty, especially in underdeveloped states or societies living below the established living standards.

Diagnostic Processes for Chronic Ailments and complex Infections

Chronic diseases are, thus far, the principal causes of death and depression in many countries. Heart diseases, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes mellitus, and tuberculosis, to mention a few, are the world’s most dangerous diseases, accounting for almost two-thirds of deaths across the continents. Additionally, chronic illnesses pose a serious economic problem, with 75% of Medicare costs stemming from treatment of these diseases. A significant exacerbating factor is the cooccurrence of these ailments, which are increasingly common and currently affect a third of the adult population.

According to Salzman, Collins, and Hajjar (2012), chronic diseases should not be treated independently, but many caregivers are often unable to consider the interconnected web of factors pertinent to individual health care plans. Moreover, medical literature tends to focus on singular aspects of diseases, often neglecting studies on the management of multiple concurrent illnesses. Therefore, patients with multiple chronic conditions are often excluded from larger medical investigations.

Frequently, multiple conditions necessitate the involvement of several medical practitioners (Hollnagel, Braithwaite & inWears, 2015). Communication gaps and coordination shortfalls among medical professionals can undermine patient care. These challenges are often associated with health discrepancies and can make the delivery of integrated and optimal care for such patients a complex task.

Strohl (2014) found evidence that heart failure poses one of the greatest threats among chronic diseases, particularly in the United States. His research shows the interdependency of chronic diseases in relation to heart-related problems, such as hypertension and diabetes.

Salzman, Collins & Hajjar (2012) report that the rate of heart failure fatalities in the U.S. stands at a disconcerting 390 per 100,000 persons per year, and continues to rise steadily. Heart failure affects approximately 2% of the population in Western countries, a figure projected to increase by 1% by 2025. This means that over 20 million people in the United Kingdom could be affected (Unger & Schwartz, 2013).

The overall prevalence of heart failure can be largely attributed to unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as poor diet and lack of physical activity. Moreover, effective treatment of primary diseases like myocardial infarction reduces mortality but increases the likelihood of heart failure, especially if detrimental lifestyle habits remain unchanged. Concurrent diseases, such as hypertension, are also projected to increase in the future.

While treatments for heart failure can extend lifespan, the inability to cure it increases the incidence of the condition and may pose an escalating economic burden (Hollnagel, Braithwaite & inWears, 2015). Hence, addressing these health conditions requires coordinated efforts from a wide range of health professionals (Randall & Ford, 2011).
New formative methods of offering Medicare have been innovated in many countries across the world in response to a set of issues that are evident, to varying degrees, in all Medicare organizations. Some of these problems include the excessive use, underuse, and misuse of health care services, inefficient planning for Medicare implementation, a bias towards acute treatment and the neglect of preventative care.

These formative solutions to improve care for chronic conditions are varied, as healthcare organizations differ (Unger & Schwartz, 2013). Some countries have initiated disease-specific programs, while others are designing advancements that are more inclusive. Many Medicare organizations have emphasized the treatment and prevention of various chronic diseases. The Health Organization has incorporated both patients and medical practitioners in a program that ensures a seamless channel in which patients can access primary care and allows for proper followup by medical practitioners.

For instance, in a case where a chronic disease, such as cancer is involved, patients are advised to commence treatment immediately and Medicare should consider the best procedural measure to cure the disease or improve the patient’s lifespan. A study conducted by Hollnagel, Braithwaite, & Wears, 2015, found that 6% of patients suffering from cancer go undetected until it’s too late.

These patients receive treatment and medication when it’s too late, and most of them die relatively young. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), awareness of chronic illnesses and the importance of regular check-ups should be promoted to help detect and diagnose infected individuals in a timely manner.

Family and patient education, as well as individual behavioural aspects, play a significant role in preserving health and preventing disease. With the aim of reducing the considerable morbidity and death associated with health-related behaviour, health experts have used models of behavioural change to guide the development of strategies that promote self-protective action, reduce behaviours that increase health risk and facilitate effective adaptations to, and dealing with, chronic diseases.

Many years of intensive effort by health organizations to promote health and reduce risk through personal behaviour change have resulted in successes, failures and learnt lessons. This study will use a conceptual medical framework, the Chronic Care Model (CCM), which was implemented by medical institutions in the late 90s (Bahrer-Kohler, 2009). This model provides a platform for organizing Medicare care to improve outcomes among patients with chronic diseases. Essentially, this model comprises four interrelated components deemed crucial to delivering high-quality care for chronic illness, namely: self-management support, delivery system design, decision support and clinical information systems.

These components are established in a health organization framework that integrates a properly prepared delivery system with corresponding social resources and policies. Through these systems, medical organizations have successfully provided the necessary care and education needed for patients, families and society at large. The education about chronic diseases to those infected and affected has created awareness and has mobilized communities to take the necessary actions. To a considerable extent, this has aided in behavioural change among different individuals in the community (Randall & Ford, 2011).
Many patients suffering from chronic illnesses have been initiated into guidance and counseling groups. These groups educate them on how to live with and manage their chronic conditions, as well as how to develop self-acceptance and acknowledge their chronic illnesses.

Public Health Implications:
According to Bahrer-Kohler (2009), chronic diseases such as heart diseases, stroke, and cancer are the principal causes of death today, accounting for almost two-thirds of all deaths in the world. Chronic illnesses are characterized by the complexity of risk factors, a known infectious origin, a long dormant phase between risk factor exposure and clinical onset of disease, a prolonged period of illness, and numerous risk factor etiology.

Public health organizations, due to their ability to assess public health issues and develop suitable plans or policies, ensure that these plans and policies are efficiently distributed and executed. However, they face numerous problems when developing and implementing chronic disease control programs (Bulechek, 2012).

First and foremost, chronic illnesses often aren’t viewed as a crisis, and the results of prevention efforts usually only become apparent years into the future. Secondly, the general public often concerns themselves more with immediate risks, such as exposure to chemicals and intoxicants, rather than deliberate risks, such as cigarette smoking. This is despite the fact that these intentional risks account for the majority of the burden resulting from chronic illnesses. Thirdly, many societies lack the information on chronic diseases and risk factors needed to effectively set priorities and evaluate programs.

Although this particular issue is being addressed, there remains a significant limitation at the neighborhood, city, and district levels. This demonstrates that adequate resources have not been allocated to chronic illness management efforts. The amount of public health support dedicated to state-specific chronic disease programs is disproportionately low in relation to the public health burden of chronic conditions.

Relevant Psychosocial issues

Psychosocial interventions are gradually being integrated into everyday healthcare systems, which appears to be very efficient. For patients suffering from chronic illnesses, the use of these interventions to handle stress has resulted in significant development in the areas of exposure, addiction, management, and pain.

Reasonably, straightforward interventions allow patients with chronic diseases to express the psychosomatic shock of their illness. Other strains have also significantly improved signs and symptoms in these patients. The relatives of patients suffering from chronic ailments are likely under more stress and are also likely to have other emotional symptoms. Healthcare organizations and medical practitioners should be aware of this hidden morbidity among caregivers (Bulechek, 2012).

Appropriate Referral Department

Health care systems have developed a department that helps to control, manage, and mitigate the prevalence of chronic diseases. These referral departments are responsible for various activities. These include coordinating patient admission to referral services, liaising with essential care providers to identify accessible services, assisting with admittance and coordinating necessary appointments. They also monitor patient health and progress via constant communication and regular home visits, while providing regular feedback. They offer patient counsel and education, where necessary, on managing their health and keep records of patient admission and follow-ups, among other activities (Bulechek, 2012).


There is substantial evidence of the effectiveness of interventions to encourage health-protective or health-attractive behaviors, such as diet and physical activity, in reducing health risk traits such as cigarette smoking, and in aiding the adaptation to chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and other related illnesses. However, there is often insufficient preservation of behavioral change as seen in preliminary interventions; this may be due to the failure to take into account the relevant factors that contribute to relapse. Progress requires practical application of new research into the role of causative factors that include intrapersonal, environmental, and chronological variables. This indicates that there is still a significant gap to be addressed in the management of chronic illnesses. A more favorable measure of sensitization, treatment education, and follow-up mechanisms should be implemented to help reduce the impact of these chronic, potentially lethal illnesses.

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Chronic and complex infections. (2019, Mar 03). Retrieved from