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Health Conditions and Epidemiological Tools

Health Conditions and Epidemiological Tools

I have chosen tobacco use and opioid addiction as the two health conditions. Tobacco is commonly ingested via cigarette smoking. Studies have revealed that cigarette smoking is the major etiological factor for preventable diseases in the USA (CDC, n.d.). Examples of diseases associated with cigarette smoking include chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and certain types of cancers, such as lung cancer (CDC, n.d.). Similar studies have indicated that tobacco use is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in the USA (CDC, n.d.). Data suggests that states have failed to allocate sufficient funds to prevent tobacco use. Industries spend billions of dollars on annual advertisements for tobacco products (CDC, n.d.). This has compounded the existing problem. Therefore, tobacco use is a health concern that should be addressed.

Opioid addiction is an epidemic in the USA. This can be attributed to the irrational prescription of opioids for pain management by medical practitioners (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.). Opioid addiction can lead to overdoses and predispose the person to death. Studies indicate that there has been an increase in opioid-related deaths, including prescription-related deaths (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.). Furthermore, there has been an increase in the abuse of heroin and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl (U.S Department of HHS, n.d.). The federal and state governments have established various measures to address opioid addiction, such as allocating funds to set up rehabilitation centers (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.). However, opioid addiction is still an epidemic in the USA and should be addressed (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.).

Descriptive Characteristics

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (n.d.), approximately 31 million adults living in the USA smoke cigarettes. This reflects about 14% of males and 11% of females (CDC, n.d.). Studies indicate that approximately 2.6 million middle and high school students use tobacco products (CDC, n.d.). It is estimated that more than 1500 people aged below 18 years are introduced to smoking daily (CDC, n.d.). Studies revealed that the highest prevalence of tobacco use is in people living in the Midwest and South region, while those in the West region had the lowest prevalence (CDC, n.d.). Approximately 500,000 deaths caused by cigarette smoking-related complications are reported in the USA annually (CDC, n.d.). Furthermore, approximately 16 million Americans have tobacco-related diseases. Data has revealed that the annual expenditure by the USA on tobacco-related diseases is approximately $225 billion (CDC, n.d.).

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (n.d.), in 2018, two-thirds of drug overdose-related deaths were caused by opioids. Data obtained in 2019 revealed a decrease in the misuse of prescription opioids by high school students (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.). Furthermore, approximately 10 million people over 12 years misused opioids in 2019 students (U.S Department of HHS, n.d.). Approximately 7.8 million misused prescription opioids, while 740,000 misused heroin students (U.S Department of HHS, n.d.). Approximately 1.28 million Americans are getting medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction students (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.). The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services allocated more than $9 billion in grants between 2016 to 2019 to help combat opioid crisis students (U.S. Department of HHS, n.d.).

Epidemiological Tools

Different epidemiological tools have been used to study tobacco use and opioid addiction. The first tool is surveying. The surveys targeted individuals, groups, and households (Hedberg & Maher, n.d.). This was accomplished via questionnaires administered both physically and online using emails and social media. An example is the National Youth Tobacco Survey conducted to obtain information from youth (Hedberg & Maher, n.d.). The second tool is the morbidity and mortality weekly reports (CDC, n.d.). These reports are provided by the public health departments from various states and contain findings and recommendations. The third tool is using birth and death certificates (Hedberg & Maher, n.d.). This is accomplished via collaborations with jurisdictions mandated to register births, deaths, and marriages (Hedberg & Maher, n.d.). An example is the National Vital Statistics system used by the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC, n.d.).

According to the CDC (n.d.), the statistics query and reporting system is the other epidemiological tool. This entails using an online database that collects and avails information from different sources (CDC, n.d.). The fifth tool is surveillance systems that focus on specific health behaviors of concern. An example is the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System used by the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC, n.d.). The other tool is disease registries. This refers to databases containing details of various diagnoses of a particular population (CDC, n.d.). This can establish the number of people suffering from tobacco or opioid-related diseases. The other tool is laboratory data. Chemical analysis can be used to detect various substances, such as heroin. An example is the National Forensic Laboratory Information System (CDC, n.d.).

Recommendations for Improving Health

Different strategies can improve the health of people who use and are addicted to tobacco. These strategies aim to help the patient to quit cigarette smoking. These strategies include counseling, medication use, and follow-up (Coindard et al., 2022). Counseling entails advising the patient on quitting smoking (Raj, 2019). This can be accomplished by patient education on the negative impacts of tobacco on health and the merits of quitting smoking. Counseling should be empathetic and nonjudgmental (Raj, 2019). It helps to determine the patient’s readiness to quit tobacco use. Patients willing to quit smoking should be prescribed and given tobacco smoking cessation medications such as varenicline, bupropion, and nicotine replacement therapy (Coindard et al., 2022). Patients should be educated on managing withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety or insomnia (Coindard et al., 2022). The third strategy is patient follow-ups. This ensures that the patient adheres to the treatment plan and works towards quitting smoking (Coindard et al., 2022). It can also enable patients to avoid triggers that can make them relapse to smoking.

According to Noble and Marie (2019), medication-assisted treatment should be adopted to improve the health of people who are addicted to opioids. This entails using counseling and medications (Noble & Marie, 2019). Counseling should focus on behavioral change where the patient is informed about the demerits of opioids, including the negative impacts on health (Noble & Marie, 2019). Patient counseling should be succeeded by medication therapy, and patients should be active participants in the choice of medication. The medications that have been recommended include methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone (Noble & Marie, 2019).


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Opioid Data Analysis and Resources.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Smoking & Tobacco Use.

Coindard, G., Acquadro, M., Chaumont, R., Arnould, B., Boisnault, P., Collignon-Portes, R., Duhot, D., Raineri, F., Tugaut, B., & Aubin, H. J. (2022). Attitudes & Behaviors Toward the Management of Tobacco Smoking Patients: Qualitative Study with French Primary Care Physicians. BMC Primary Care, 23(1), 1–11.

Hedberg, K., & Maher, J. (n.d.). The CDC Field Epidemiology Manual: Collecting Data.

Noble, F., & Marie, N. (2019). Management of Opioid Addiction with Opioid Substitution Treatments: Beyond Methadone and Buprenorphine. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 10(JAN), 1–8.

Raj, S. (2019). Assessment of Willingness Towards Anti-Tobacco Counseling among Adults using Tobacco – A Retrospective Study. International Journal of Dentistry and Oral Science.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (n.d.). Opioid Crisis Statistics.,and%20745%2C000%20people%20used%20heroin.&text=Appropriate%20prescribing%20of%20opioids%20is,and%20safety%20of%20Medicare%20beneficiaries.


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Descriptive Data
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Health Conditions and Epidemiological Tools

Health Conditions and Epidemiological Tools

The behaviors of a population can put it at risk for specific health conditions. Studies of human characteristics have shown that those with similar health risks can be targeted for population health improvement.

Choose two groups from the health conditions listed below.
Tobacco use
Alcohol abuse
Opioid addiction
Heart disease
Pancreatic cancer
Begin your project by briefly discussing why you have chosen the groups.
Research and discuss descriptive characteristics that are typically associated with the groups you have chosen.
Thoroughly research and discuss at least five different types of epidemiological tools used to study the two groups.
Finally, conclude with detailed recommendations for improving the health of those who develop the conditions you chose.
To support your work, use your course and textbook readings, credible Internet sources, and also use the South University Online Library. As in all assignments, cite your sources in your work and provide references for the citations in APA format.

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