Underdeveloped countries face unique challenges that make it difficult to provide adequate healthcare services. One of these difficulties is the transformation of epidemiology caused by changes in global health over the past several decades. According to McQuiston, Parrado, Martinez and & Uribe (2005), negative epidemiological transformations are a major issue in underdeveloped countries. It is evidenced by an increase in the prevalence of lifestyle diseases, non-communicable diseases and cancer-related complications. The second challenge is the need to narrow sanitation gaps. Although sanitation inequalities have improved globally, many undeveloped countries still struggle with poor sanitation services, which is a leading cause of preventable deaths.
There are many strategies which can be used to address the above challenges. The most important strategy is for the governments to develop appropriate social policies for addressing healthcare challenges for entire populations and different demographic groups. In developing these policies, it is essential to take into account the fact that effective healthcare delivery is influenced by many factors such as education, gender, income and place of residence among others. Another strategy is to seek assistance from developed countries in terms of manpower training and equipment supplies. This strategy can enable developing countries to keep abreast with global best practices in health care (Strack, Magill & McDonagh, 2003).
Nurses can advocate for healthcare at the global level by giving evidence-based recommendations while encouraging people to seek preventive services such as precautionary medications, screening and counseling. Through public health campaigns, nurses can encourage many people to adopt healthy lifestyles and live longer. Nurses can also use their prerequisite knowledge and competencies to take leadership roles in assessing the healthcare needs of communities and propose solutions (WHO, 2003).
McQuiston, C., Parrado, E. A., Martinez, A. P., & Uribe, L. (2005). Community-based participatory research with Latino community members: Horizonte Latino. Journal of Professional Nursing, 21(4), 210-215.
Strack, R.W., Magill, C., & McDonagh, K. (2003). Engaging youth through photovoice. Health Promotion Practice, 5(1), 49-58.
WHO (2003). Towards an International Consensus on Policy for Long-Term Care of the Ageing. Geneva: WHO.