When researching current events for the vulnerable population, I came across this article by Mechanic and Tanner (2007). The definition of vulnerable population can cover a vast assortment of individuals. With the United States currently facing many economic, social, and political challenges related to the delivery of health care services the number of vulnerable population groups is growing. Groups part of the vulnerable population include the poor, the homeless, migrant workers, abused individuals, senior citizens, pregnant adolescents, disabled veterans, and people with sexually transmitted diseases. According to Mechanic and Tanner (2007), "Vulnerability results from developmental problems, personal incapacities, disadvantaged social status, inadequacy of interpersonal networks and supports, degraded neighborhoods and environments, and the complex interactions of those factors over the life course" (p. 1220).
While working in the home care field, I come across a vast number of patients who fall into the definition of vulnerable population. I have had poor patients who cannot afford their medications or to follow up with doctor appointments. There was one patient who lived in a chicken coop with one light bulb hanging in the middle of the room and that was his home. I would define him as homeless even though he himself did not see it that way. With our location we also provide care to a number of disabled veterans.