Population Health Assessment and Analysis

Community
Heath city is located in Kaufman and Rockwall Counties in Texas. It
covers a total area of about 6.9 square miles and is made up of people
from diverse backgrounds, races, ages, educational standards and
incomes. Of particular interest to this research is the elderly group in
the city, especially with regard to the appropriateness and sufficiency
of facilities in meeting their needs.
Climate
Heath Texas experiences highly variable weather. As a city, Heath
experiences some of the most extreme weather conditions. Its climate
ranges from semiarid to subtropical-subhumid. This, in terms of
precipitation and temperature, amounts to dry, mild winters, dry hot
summers, and wet springs and falls. Heath Texas experiences its coldest
month in January, where its temperatures average at 9° C, with the
warmest period occurring at around July and august where temperatures
average at 27° C. It is located in a zone that experiences an average
precipitation of approximately 34 inches every year. This precipitation
mainly occurs in the spring and fall, with the lowest precipitation
occurring in the winter around July and August. It is worth noting that
the region experiences evepotranspiration that exceeds rainfall in
almost every month, with the discrepancy becoming even more pronounced
from May to September.
Population
Heath Texas has an estimated population of 4149 people, according to
2000 statistics from the United States Census Bureau. These are
approximated to be 1380 households, with 1214 families living in the
city. Heath Texas is made up of a largely homogenous population as far
as ethnicity and race are concerned. Studies show that as at 2000, Heath
Texas was mainly made up of Caucasian who took up 95.2% of the
population, with African Americans or blacks taking up 0.8% of the
population (Bair, 2008). These two groups had experienced a significant
decrease in percentage composition from the 1990 statistics that gave
them 97.8% and 0.9% of the population. The only group that experienced
a significant increase in proportion was the “Other Race” whose
percentage moved from 1.3% to 4.0%, an increase of 2.7% (Bair, 2008).
This may have resulted from the increased numbers of illegal immigrants.
The “Other races” category is made up of Native Hawaiian, American
Indians, Asians, Alaskan Natives and Pacific Islanders.
Heath Texas’ population is composed of individuals from every age
group, albeit with varying demographics. As at 2000 census, individuals
younger than 14 years old took up 26%, 7.5% for 15-19, 2.1% for 20-34,
27.8% for 25-44, 28.4% for 45-64, while the elderly individuals aged
above 65 years took up 8.2% (Bair, 2008). While the percentage of the
elderly individuals above 65 years may have gone down from the 8.7% in
the 1990 statistics, the percentage of individuals between 45 and 64 has
gone up from the 28.5%. This shows that the population is aging at a
high rate.
Transport
While Heath is a crucial city in Texas, it has a relatively
underdeveloped transport system. Its roads are not properly maintained,
and does not have any existing rail system (the closest station is 30
miles away) or even an airport, which poses problems to the
transportation of the elderly, especially in case of emergencies.
Recreation facilities
Health incorporates a number of fun and recreation facilities including
community parks and trail that continue to increase the opportunities
for exercise, relaxation and play. Recently, the city came up with the
“Comprehensive Plan” identifying and preserving land for other
parts, as well as a trail system that will eventually connect all parts
of the city (Hall & Porterfield, 2008). The existing recreation
facilities include the Towne Center Park that is situated behind the
City Hall along 200 Laurence Drive, Terry Park situated lakeside at
Terry Lane’s end, as well as Community Room at City Hall (Hall &
Porterfield, 2008). These, however, apart from being insufficient to
cater for the bulging population of Heath City are also poorly
maintained, thereby limiting the chances that the elderly will be using
the recreational facilities.
Religion
Health has 81.87% of its people as, which means that they are affiliated
with a religion. Catholics take up the largest proportion at 12.28%,
followed by LDS with 1.20%, Christians at 2.29%, Eastern faiths at
0.38%, while other religions take the remaining proportion (City Data,
2012).
Healthcare
While Heath Texas is a relatively developed, it is clearly lacking of
substantial healthcare facilities. The closest healthcare center is
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Rockwall, located about 3 miles away
from the town in Rockwall Texas. Others include Texas Regional Medical
Center at Sunnyvale and Lake Pointe Medical Center located about 7 miles
in Sunnyvale and 8 miles away in Rowlett Texas. This significantly
reduces the chances that the elderly will be provided with proper care
when they need it.
Community health diagnosis
A community health diagnosis for the elderly population in Heath Texas
is that it needs an improvement in its infrastructure catering for the
elderly. The community is bound to experience an increase in its elderly
population in the future. It is, therefore, imperative that the
infrastructure is improved especially with regard to the proximity of
hospitals, sufficiency of recreational parks, as well as the
interconnectedness of the transport system.
References
Bair, F. H. Jr. (2008) – Planning Cities, City planning: what it is
and what it should do. City of Heath
Hall, K.B & Porterfield, G.A (2008) –Community By Design, What Is
Community Design Anyway? City of Heath
City Data. (2012). Heath Texas. Web retrieved from HYPERLINK
“http://www.city-data.com/city/Heath-Texas.html”
http://www.city-data.com/city/Heath-Texas.html
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