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Herndon Community Health Assessment


Herndon community is located in the state of Virginia in the United States of America. The town is bordered by Herndon Parkway town, the Dulles Toll Road, the Elden Street, and the Old Ox Road. Based on the United States Census Bureau (2014), the Herndon community had a total population of about 39 211 persons living within her borders. This statistical data make Herndon the third largest towns in the Fairfax County of the United States of America. Lying over a land area of about 8.76 sq miles, Herndon town has a population density of about 4,650 persons per sq miles. The housing types are varied and are of different qualities depending on the residents’ levels of income. These housing units can be categorized as detached unit residencies 7,405 (50.2%), townhomes 3,434 (23.3%), apartments 3,815 (25.9%), mobile homes 93 (0.63%) and total homes constituting about 14,747 housing units.

According to the housing survey given above, there is adequate housing in the region to house every family comfortably. However, a serious challenge occurs in the price of housing units in the region. Averagely, the median price for housing units in the region is about $404, 778 while the median gross rent for every family is about $1, 662 hence many family sort to live in multigenerational houses, whereby children, parents, and grandchildren live together. Concerning these observations, there exists a challenging fact over housing strategies as the mode of housing adopted by most families in the community exposes them to many dangers initiated by crowding. Outbreaks of communicable diseases, waterborne, and airborne can have devastating effects on the entire community. Therefore, precautionary measures need to be taken into account to avoid such outbreaks. 

The Central Issue

The main issue of concern during the research period was to assess the extent of safety guaranteed to the residents of Herndon Community. This assessment was based on keen observations of the available health and safety facilities as well as the dangers to which the community was exposed. Based on these assessments, our findings were as described in the subsequent sections of this report. The safety of the people in this community is at risk due to the many challenges noted during the survey. For instance, the ongoing construction of the playground in Alabama Drive presents gross danger to the people around, especially the children. An open pit in the playground exposes children around to dangers of falls and personal injuries. Besides, there were numerous rusted pieces of trash that littered the playground, making it one of the dangerous places for children to play in. Water supply systems in the community are adequate and cover all families in the region. There is adequate sewage and waste disposal mechanisms established in the region, whereby all sewer wastes are collected from all residential and commercial premises, and all wastewaters treated in the blue Plains Wastewater.

The region is exposed to certain disasters, such as the winter storms, tornadoes, and lightning attacks. Besides, since the water supply unit used by the community originates from a single source, any disaster affecting the supply system will adequately devastate the entire community. Based on these observations, serious health and safety precautions need to be put in place by the community, and the government agencies in the region. Exposure to terrorism and terrorists attack on the people residing and working in Washington DC is as an additional danger to the community. Additionally, the location of the community close to the Dulles Airport exposes the residents to threats of disease migration and attacks, such as Ebola viruses’ attacks and other related epidemics. For instance, in 1989, the primates at a local primates unit located in the corner of Sunset Hills Road and those in the Whiele Avenue were found to have been infected with the Ebola Virus. Owing to the proximity of these places to the community, we can deduce the possibility of Ebola outbreak in the community if such condition will not be fully contained and the safety of the community well guaranteed.

Literature Review

A growing body of literature has focused on the various intervention mechanisms adopted to help manage and control disasters and risks at the community level. Among the most recommended techniques available in most of the research articles are the creation of community awareness concerning various risks to which they are exposed (Department of Human Services, 2008). This move helps in the minimization of risks by sensitizing the community on the appropriate measures to be taken in case of risks. Herndon community is exposed to a wide array of risks, ranging from personal risks to community-based risks, such as large-scale diseases outbreaks. These require multi- dimensional approaches that include the participation of the community members and the government bodies and policy makers. Literature is in support of multi- thronged approaches that focus on the sensitization of the community through outreach programs. The Department of Human Services, (2008) ssuggest different measures that should be taken into account in order to ascertain the success of these programs. In the light of this, community-based sensitization programs are recommended. These should be conducted by health care experts in order to create and expand the awareness of the community on the various dangers, which they are exposed to, and the possible intervention mechanisms.    

Community Assessment – Evidence Table

Australian Institute of Primary Care. (2008). Measuring health promotion impacts: A guide to impact evaluation in integrated health promotion. Measuring health promotion impacts, 7- 15.
Creating community awareness, Deployment of health care staff, development of health care practitioners           Australian population living in the rural areas Clinical guidelines on the appropriate measures to be taken to avoid health care problems in a community Evidence from multi- ethnic groups inhabiting the south Australian community Strengths: success in health care monitoring, awareness creation, and improved health standards. Weaknesses: large communities to be accessed, oppositions to change The practice guidelines are appropriate for implementation in areas that are highly dense and exposed to numerous dangers.
Disaster Risk Mangement for Health Sheets. (2011, May ). Disaster Risk Management for Health: Overview. Global Platform, 2- 5.
Creation of public awareness on the possible  risks, monitoring and evaluation, risks minimization procedures Global communities Guidelines on risks management and prevention Evidences from multi ethnic groups Strengths: risks reduced, disaster preparedness enhanced. Weaknesses: risk management in multiethnic groups a big challenge, large area coverage. Practice guidelines appropriate for multi- ethnic regions


Based on the observations made, the Herndon community is exposed to various health risks. Widespread risks are a common exposure to the community as many livelihood resources are shared among the community members. They include water, recreation grounds, and housing units. Therefore, it is possible that outbreaks of communicable diseases that are either waterborne or airborne will have a significant impact on the lives of many residents. Prior precautionary measures, therefore, need to be put in place to help sensitize the community on the health risks they are exposed to. Community-based programs geared towards creating awareness on health risks and management programs need to be put in place in order to equip the residents with the necessary insights on proper management procedures for various risks. Besides, the health care team is required to conduct outreach to the society in order to assess the health status and familiarize themselves with the possible risks for proper management strategies. At the policy level are the government and policy makers who should come up with the necessary measures to highlight the policy frameworks to be put in place in order to help minimize the possible risks common in the region. The creation and development of health care units to cater for the increasing needs of the people around is one factor that must be taken into consideration by the government of the region as well as the healthcare practitioners in charge of the region.   


Department of Human Services. (2008). Measuring health promotion impacts: A guide to impact evaluation in integrated health promotion. Measuring health promotion impacts, 7- 15.

Disaster Risk Mangement for Health Sheets. (2011, May ). Disaster Risk Management for Health: Overview. Global Platform, 2- 5.