Type: Economics
Pages: 14 | Words: 3947
Reading Time: 17 Minutes

The state of Florida is located in the southern region of the United States. This paper is a research-based in Hillsborough County, which is a Florida Metropolitan. In 2010, the County had a population of 1,231,553. Indeed, there has been an annual population increase of approximately 20,000 in the County (Florida, 2004). This posed a challenge on the resource utilization as far as the entire Hillsborough County is concerned alongside with Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando, which makes up the larger Tampa and Saint Petersburg region. 

Besides this, Hillsborough has the largest geographical stretch of Tampa and Saint Petersburg metropolitan area. In addition, the largest population of the County comprise of the middle age between 25 years and 55 years old. Furthermore, the population growth rate is significantly high in comparison with life expectancy that remains relatively high too. The latest 2011 census stood at 121,322 people, above 85 years old. Consequently, following increased birth rate and low mortality late with high life expectancy, the population increase in the County remains predominantly high every year as pointed out earlier. Majority of the population lives in the urban settings. However, poverty and illiteracy level is vividly high with a significant size of the population being faced off from in the access to education due to the high poverty levels (United States, 1982).

As a result of the steadily escalating population size, health has become a challenge across the divide. To address this issue, the Hillsborough County government adopted the most common health system used in the entire United States known as Medicaid. This program was enforced in 1964 and by then was referred to as, ‘the XIX the Social Security Act’, which is co-funded by both the federal government and the member states. In addition, this is the largest health program of its kind, which focuses on offering medical services to the low-income earners, the disabled as well as the underprivileged, and aged population. The major financier of the program is Washington State, which pays 50% of the cost in the high-income states belt and 70% on the lower-income state belt, for instance Arkanas (Bryant et al., 2007).

This paper seeks to use the data collected in order to analyze health issues in Hillsborough County and beyond; therefore, to make the necessary input with a view to improving the health situation of the region in the future. The dominant of the health services provider in Florida is the Florida Hospital Health Care System (FHHCS), which covers the vast majority and acts as the outstanding employer of residence in Hillsborough County. The main categories of the employees are nurses and doctors, among other medical practitioners. The scope of services offered in this health system varies from the simplest, outpatient model to the most complex, inpatient model. To further enhance the health systems of Florida, the state has projected a health prospect known as the, ‘Healthy People 2020’. The government move to establish this prospect aims to attain a healthy populace by the year 2020. This projection thrives under the vision of, ‘A society in which all people live long and healthy lives’. The main focus of this initiative is the minimization of chronic infections including: diabetes, HIV and Obesity (Mullen, Bledsoe & Bellamy, 2008). The inbuilt procedure on the implementation of the vision is enshrined in the article enclosed within it and set to be accomplished within the time frame.

Further and beyond, the main goal of the vision is to boost the health performance of the nation and the County in particular through deterrence, early exposure, timely cure, and psychoanalysis in rehabilitation centers and beyond. Indeed, the use of the medical databases by the doctors in Florida has not had been utilized in the recent past. Therefore, the framework of this vision provides certain cities the opportunity to employ the available database resources and other medical tools in the move to realize their goal among them being, Hillsborough. This also sets pace in the mobilization of health personnel in order to maximize their output and service delivery. The 5 MAP-IT also aims at tracking the community progress and creating a system to enhance of this vision, together with assessing the community needs (Maynard, 2010).

Drug and substance abuse in the US has been so rampant. Preventive measures have been put in place in the past, but little achievement has been realized to date due to laxity and improper adherence to the provisions of the health prospects. MAP-IT appears as a rational and implementable framework towards the achievement of the 2020 vision. However, upgraded health services have been witnessed from the inception of the implementation of the healthy people 2020 health prospect. The major indicators of the sound impact of the initiative are marked by increased birth rates, decreased death rates that result from coronary and heart diseases (Bryant et al., 2007).

The leading health indicators communicate health issues being accorded a high priority in the American society and beyond. The healthy people 2020 vision focuses on the twenty indicators such as the increased physical activity of the people, reduced populations of the overweight and obese people, reduced tobacco use, reduced drug and substance abuse, responsible sexual behavior, improved mental health, reduced injury and violence especially homicide, improved environmental conservation by the protection of ozone and controlling pollution, improved immunization against diseases and improved access to healthcare (Bryant et al., 2007).   


Demographic, Health and Income Data

Majority of residence in the Hillsborough County are White comprising of 80% of the total while only 17% are Black Americans and only 3.3% from other races, for instance, American Indian and Hawaiian people. In addition, the vast majority of the citizens are native with 86% of the population while only 14% in 2005 were born outside the County. Out of this number 38% was born in Florida. In 2005, the middle class of the households in Hillsborough County earned $45,129, which was slightly higher than the states average earning per household (Maynard, 2010). Hospitals preference of the resident of Hillsborough differs sharply. For instance, people who recommend the services offered in the Tampa General Hospital is rated at 67% while those who would recommend the South City Center, South Bay Hospital in Florida is just 38%. Furthermore, the dental and oral health systems have been neglected. The efforts to incorporate the dental health care are yet to bear any fruits despite the recommendation by the HOPE committee in 2008.

The cost of medical services varies sharply in different locations posing a stiff challenge in the access to the services for low income earners as a result of variance in proximity. For instance, the reconstructive surgery costs $10,536 and $1,841 in the University Community Hospital, Tampa and H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center respectively. This degree of variability is eminent in most areas of the County and poses an economic challenge as well as barring certain classes of people from access to quality health services. Consequently, this beefs up the mortality late in the County and reduces the incentives of the public to seek medical care in the hospital. In 2008, the Hillsborough Organization for Progress and Equality (HOPE) launched extensive campaigns against the housing and medical care. It was done though the formation of a commission of experts to research and recommend on the way forward in realizing a community described with proper homes and health.

Furthermore, the commission was charged with the responsibilities of finding out the cause and remedy to the multiple times increment in the cost of medical care with regard to the rise in inflation over the recent past in the County, despite the conspicuous insufficiency in the medical insurance covers for the Americans. The Hillsborough Counties Indigent Health Care was one of the National standards. However, lack of such services plays down the capacity of the health care for the ability to serve the populace to its maximum capacity. Therefore, the members of the Nehemiah Assembly were set to deliberate on medical programs that were to be incorporated into the official curriculum such as the dental care and oral health (Grohosky, Moore & Ochshorn, 2007).

Data Analysis, Interpretation, and Priority

Hillsborough region faces a litany of health concerns. The echelon of education is relatively low as it appears in the analysis of this research. In order to achieve the vision of Health People 2020, the government has attempted to increase levels of literacy and education in Hillsborough County through awareness campaigns. Another challenging factor to the health concern in Hillsborough County is the level of poverty in the Tampa region, which is alarming. The government and private entrepreneurs should try hard to ensure that they create more jobs for the youths, so that the economy may become more stable to finance the health system in Hillsborough County and offer a share for the education sector. The effect of health on the safety of the community has far reaching effects. In the US, particularly in the state of Florida, safety of the people has been destabilized as a result of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and psychosomatic despair (Bryant et al., 2007).

Furthermore, community safety influences other outcomes including diet, birth weight and social support. To analyze the problems posed by the community safety break down, Health Ranking has been put forth in order to measure violent misdemeanors for every hundred thousand citizens. Furthermore, various initiatives have been incorporated in the region and the entire US to enhance the community safety. This includes: the Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), which is geared towards the deterrence of recidivism; Kingship Care, which focuses on the reinstating victimized children of maltreatment resulting from the ill health in the family layout situated at Lutz, Florida.

The study of community safety based on the effect of violence against the member society is an important issue in the United States. Indeed, it is predominantly risk of the health problems dominance accounting for more than 18,000 deaths every year, second from homicide, which claimed more lives of teens in 2005. Furthermore, eye witnessing of the crimes and violence has been termed as a major cause of emotional distress and consequently lead to the emotional disorders like the hypertension among other stress-related ailments. Besides this, accumulative distress has been found out as a contributor to increased uptake of alcohol and cigarettes in a move to minimize or cope with the stress (Bryant, Brown et al., 2007). Various measures have been put in place to counter-attack the drug prevalence. In 2007, ‘Task Force on the Treatment-Based Drug Court’ was signed in the supreme court of Florida. Its key objective was to make the recommendation on the policy, legal and procedural matters facing the treatment-based drug court and examine the possible means that the above could be used to realize a positive impact on the drug dependency reduction mission.

The federation of families for Children’s mental Health in the County of Hillsborough is one of the groups that has rose to restrain the overwhelming health problems tapering down to children insanity as a result of various challenges, drugs inclusive. In order to secure a better placement in the dispensation of its mandate, the confederacy undertakes a variety of programs. These include: Family and Community Trainings, Advocacy Alerts, Mental Health Awareness campaigns among others. The realization of the goals of this confederacy would translate into an acute reduction in drug and substance abuse as well as a well-rounded society free from the influence of drugs mainly in the three major cities of Hillsborough. The convergence of naturally striking ailments with the artificially instigated ailments has sparked the region with the challenge of checking the health problems as the youth remains predominantly dependent on drugs. This has led to futile efforts by both the County government as well as the National government (Bryant et al., 2007).

The government and international communities have placed considerable emphasis on the fight against the tobacco use in the elimination of the resultant ailments. For instance, lung cancer has been credited with the use of tobacco (Unlu, 2009). Consequently, studies have shown that the use of Tobacco is the key contributing factors towards the eminent premature deaths that could otherwise be prevented. According to the report from the World Health Organization (WHO), tobacco usage is stands out to be a major  risk factor, a causative agent of the vast majority of  chronic diseases such as cardiovascular ailments and lung cancer its prominent ability to cause breathing problems. Other efforts by international agencies in order to control the spread of infections have been helpful in a number of ways. Firstly, this has reduced the number of infections transfer. For example, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has been conducting health assessment exercises across the globe for persons flying to other parts of the world away from their native lands. This has had a positive impact in the minimization of infection from contacts and curtails the spread of infectious diseases resulting from migrations (Bryant et al., 2007). In the move to enhance, the fight against infections, the township of Hillsborough has been conducting frequent screening of the restaurants, public swimming ponds and other public places, in order to play down the spread of infections. In addition to this, the statistical analysis of the reported infections has been enhanced through the placement of the registrar of vital statistics in the in the health offices.

The Fight for a Tobacco-Free Society in Hillsborough

Tobacco use in the Hillsborough County has had taken a diverse dimension. This move has resulted in the escalation of breathing-related ailments. In this regard, the effect has necessitated the move to counter the spread of its use as well as the awareness campaigns on the hazards of tobacco use. One of the major organs that have launched tremendous campaign against tobacco is the Hillsborough County Anti-drug Alliance (HCADA). This agency carries out awareness campaigns throughout the Hillsborough County and targets to reduce contact with passive, unintentional smoking through second-hand smoke (Unlu, 2009).

The fight for a healthy County is further enhanced by the fact that Hillsborough County has very stable governance at the County level and supplemented by the national government. This enhances cooperation between the people on all grounds. The health system in Hillsborough County is easy to improve because the society is not at war by any chance. This may assist in combating the priority leading health display in the Hillsborough region, which is drug and substance abuse. Since this issue takes away considerable lives in the Hillsborough County. Some health indicators expressed by the HP2020 show a noteworthy strength in Hillsborough County’s situation of health.

According to the report from the World Health Organization, one of its partner agencies, the Global Information System on Alcohol and Health (GISAH) has revealed that the use of alcohol has been detrimental, claiming the lives of 2,5 million people every year worldwide. Besides this, it is a causative agent of approximately 60 different infections. Further statistics from the WHO shows that, in the year 2005, the average consumption of alcohol per individuals aged 15 years and above was 6,13 liters of concentrated alcohol. Among these numbers, about 30% of the total consumption goes unrecorded.

Hillsborough County government helps the poor residence, with health challenges through the provision of subsidized health services via the Hillsborough Health Care Plan (HCHCP). This initiative ensures that all the residents of the County have access to eminent medical care. However, these costs remain comparatively high with regard to the low income earners who form the vast majority. However, due to high level of poverty as a result of profound illiteracy, majority of the residents do not access medical attention due to the euphorbia of high charges until their illness is extremely severe to ignore thus necessitating the hiring of a fast means of propulsion and probably the admission charges in the hospital. This scares away a hefty group of citizens who cannot afford the medical changes (Unlu, 2009).

In the recent past, the rates of abuse of tobacco have relatively reduced in Hillsborough County. This is a notable strength to indicate that if the same trend continues, Hillsborough County would increase its chances to achieve the Healthy People vision by 2020. Also, the manner in which the rates of obesity and diabetes have been reducing in the recent history shows that Hillsborough County is progressing positively towards the achievement of the Healthy People 2020 (Unlu, 2009). This is a significant progress towards the health status of this County and the entire Florida. The results of the improvement of health system reflect to the same improvement in terms of economic development and educational stability at large.

The abuse of drug and substance in Hillsborough County has been reduced in the recent past. This percentage is expected to reflect on several factors. The priority of health issue of this research is drug abuse. In the recent past, the deaths resulting from usage have increased rapidly. In order to achieve the vision of Healthy People 2020 on time, it is noteworthy that the governing body and health practitioners of Hillsborough County should consider taking steps towards reducing drug abuse in this County since analysis show that at least 26% of the high school students in Hillsborough County had tried marijuana by 2010. Also, 8,2% of the same students’ population was reported to have tried taking prescription pain relievers in order to get high (Unlu, 2009). The determinants of a health model hold that factors such as economic stability, genetics, educational level and our income materially affect our health. The determinants of health include the social economic environment in which we live, the physical environment and the person’s individual characteristics (Grohosky, Moore & Ochshorn, 2007). This model can be used productively to analyze the health concern in Hillsborough County. The abuse of drugs is rampant, because of the social economic factor surrounding the people of Hillsborough County. The economy of this city runs using a massive amount of cash flow, and this reflects to the children having a lot of money and a lot of time being idle. The low level of education among the people of Hillsborough County results to increased rates of drug and substance abuse. This also has a bearing on the crime patterns and trends in this city. Therefore, the society of Hillsborough County experiences some instability, which causes the city to develop at a slow rate.

However, over the years the rose flowers, which have been treated as the best quality of ornamental garden origin decors in homes and other places of interest, have presented Hillsborough with a serious health problem. Indeed, some of the species of this flower are highly susceptible to certain fungal infections such as rust and mildew. To hamper the spread of their infections, Hillsborough advocates for the growing of the Antique roses, which are highly resistant to infections. Dr. Huey advocates for the container-grown hybrid tea array, which are less susceptible to infections.

The population of Hillsborough County at large gets predisposed to a high risk of exposing their children to the vice of drug and substance abuse if caution is not taken. Therefore, it is necessary for this population to change their behavior in terms of their lifestyle and the environment. For example, children who get brought up in a surrounding that is prone to immorality and drug abuse are likely to behave in the same way. Therefore, the residents of Hillsborough County should consider improving the environments in which their children are brought up. The determinants of a health model signify that education is an essential aspect of life in relation to a person’s health status and stability. An intervention should be done to improve the quality of education in Hillsborough County so that the state of health and the rates of drug abuse reduce by a substantial percentage.


The society of Hillsborough County should make interventions if they want to solve the predicament of drug and substance abuse. To explain this problem, the nurses, the government and people should intervene so that the problem can be solved.  The nurses in these interventions should ensure that they respond immediately to the issues concerning the patients of drug abuse and updated on the way to use the available medical databases. Also, the nurses have a responsibility to sensitize the people against drug and substance abuse. This is a crucial intervention by the nurses. The government should also intervene in cases regarding drug abuse in Hillsborough County. Funding rehabilitation systems for the victims of drug abuse and conducting initiatives and crusades to campaign against drug abuse are a valuable intervention. This intervention should entail the use of empirical data as evidence to prove the people of Hillsborough County that their drug abusing trends profoundly affects their society and the economy. Despite the attempts by the County government to strengthen the health sector at all levels, a lot remains to be done in order to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor. Besides this, health facilities should be increased and made affordable to all classes of people in order to reach the county’s target of a healthy populace by 2020, which appears significantly first-rate to improve the state of health in the County and beyond. The County government should as well invest in health in order to contain the disease prevalence and bring to a halt the culture of insanity in children, which has been brought about by increased drug misuse.


In conclusion, the health problem resulting from drug and substance misuse has appeared to be a significant contributor towards the various emotional and health instability. However, the prevalence of intake of drugs has been reportedly accelerated by increased family breakdown resulting in emotional distress and other forms of family unit disharmonies. The global research on the prevalence of infections as a result of drugs, nature and unscreened immigrants are some as well as underdeveloped strategies of handling the diseases and epidemics has been the major causes of profound effects of the infections due to late detections. The research from this paper proposes the development of comprehensive health policies to ensure that the patients of drug abuse in Hillsborough County receive the required medication other than leaving the situation unattended. Furthermore, it seeks to propose the establishment of rehabilitation centers that would accommodate the victims of both drugs and family unrests thus restoring sanity and trigger the phase of development. This is a key policy since it enhances medication of those of low socioeconomic status in Hillsborough County and reduces the death rates that result from drug abuse. Also, it enhances the creation of a society of a drug free Hillsborough County. Therefore, it should also be improved so that it funds the medication of more people in Hillsborough County. As a result, evidence based findings can be a hugely influential asset to ensure the production of a society whose health system is wholly functional. The health policy proposal should cover the medication of people below the line of poverty and enhance that people affected by drug abuse rectify their behavior through rehabilitation attempts.

To sum up, the population of illiterate residence remains relatively high. The uptake of modern technology and other precautious innovations is therefore hampered by the idle populace in the urban setting which forms the biggest face of the counter. To counter the rising illiteracy levels, the County government of Hillsborough should develop an education curriculum that would accommodate high capacity of the population accessing education. To achieve this, the government should carry out extensive civic education on the constructive processes of handling the County resources and the enlightenment of the citizens on the side effects of drug abuse. Lastly, people reported with drug trafficking should face the full force of law in order to pose a stun warning on recurrent attempts.

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