Post an explanation of at least two opportunities that currently exist for RNs and APRNs to actively participate in policy review
In the Module 4 Discussion, you considered how professional nurses can become involved in policy-making. A critical component of any policy design is evaluation of the results. How comfortable are you with the thought of becoming involved with such matters?
Some nurses may be hesitant to get involved with policy evaluation. The preference may be to focus on the care and well-being of their patients; some nurses may feel ill-equipped to enter the realm of policy and political activities. However, as you have examined previously, who better to advocate for patients and effective programs and polices than nurses? Already patient advocates in interactions with doctors and leadership, why not with government and regulatory agencies?
In this Discussion, you will reflect on the role of professional nurses in policy evaluation.
- In the Module 4 Discussion, you considered how professional nurses can become involved in policy-making.
- Review the Resources and reflect on the role of professional nurses in policy evaluation.
By Day 3 of Week 9
Post an explanation of at least two opportunities that currently exist for RNs and APRNs to actively participate in policy review. Explain some of the challenges that these opportunities may present and describe how you might overcome these challenges. Finally, recommend two strategies you might make to better advocate for or communicate the existence of these opportunities. Be specific and provide examples.
By Day 6 of Week 9
Respond to at least two of your colleagues* on two different days by suggesting additional opportunities or recommendations for overcoming the challenges described by your colleagues.
Expert Answer and Explanation
The Role of the RN/APRN in Policy Evaluation
The fact that nurses are part of the rapidly developing health systems means that they need to take part in the formulation of health policies as well as implementing them. Their influence has a direct effect on patient safety and quality of care (Williams & Anderson, 2018). A strategic solving of the problems that influence these policies can also help in smooth implementation.
Opportunities That Currently Exist For RNs and APRNs to Actively Participate In Policy Review
One of the active opportunities for the nurses is in nursing education. RNs and APRNs need to acquire various policy-making skills that would help them in addressing the professional challenges they may have to face in the policy making process. Also, the fact that nurses are always present in almost all healthcare settings presents an opportunity for them to give a significant input to policy decisions (Glasgow et al., 2003). Lastly, nurses, more than any other healthcare personnel, have a great influence in resource allocation as well as support delivery, hence their unique role in policy formulation.
Challenges That These Opportunities May Present
Some of the challenges include the fact that people in the healthcare industry have an old view of nurses, where they perceive them as only influencers of patient care and that they are not open to other roles. Health managers and health authorities also perceive nurses to be in the sixth grade (which is the last) in comparison to other health professionals (Glasgow et al., 2003). Hence, the idea of policy influence is new among individuals.
Overcoming These Challenges
The first step in overcoming this challenges is training healthcare professionals on the importance of nursing management. They should also be made to understand that nurses are in more direct contact with patients more than any other stakeholder in health, and hence there input in health policy formulation is crucial.
Strategies to Better Advocate For the Existence of These Opportunities
The education system of nurses should create more emphasis on policy development and implementation (Shiramizu et al., 2017). Also, directly educating other healthcare givers on the various roles of the individuals in nursing could help position nurses well in policy review and implementation.
Glasgow, R. E., Lichtenstein, E., & Marcus, A. C. (2003). Why don’t we see more translation of health promotion research to practice? Rethinking the efficacy-to-effectiveness transition. American journal of public health, 93(8), 1261-1267.
Shiramizu, B., Shambaugh, V., Petrovich, H., Seto, T. B., Ho, T., Mokuau, N., & Hedges, J. R. (2017). Leading by success: Impact of a clinical and translational research infrastructure program to address health inequities. Journal of racial and ethnic health disparities, 4(5), 983-991.
Williams, J. K., & Anderson, C. M. (2018). Omics research ethics considerations. Nursing outlook, 66(4), 386-393.
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