NURSING7011 Leadership And Management In Nursing 2 : Essay Fountain

Question:

The purpose of assessment is to develop understanding of policy development and implementation in Australian health care settings from a nursing perspective.

Discuss how nurses can influence policy development within health services.

Examine challenges to implementing policies in the ward / unit of a health service that nurses may encounter.

Suggest strategies nurses could use to address these challenges.

The essay should include an introduction, discussion of key points and conclusion.

 

Answer:

Introduction

Globally, nursing is the largest medical profession (Asuquo, et al. 2016 p. 1). As a result of their large numbers and the critical role they play in ensuring a healthy society, nurses can have a vital role to play in policy development globally. This is so because the reason health policies are developed is to ensure that the needs of patients are met and to guarantee general public health. Since nurses are majorly involved in caring and treatment of these patients as well as in the prevention of diseases in society. Nurses must be majorly involved in the development of health policies that improve the delivery of care since they will be advocating for patients and the general public in the process. Also, nurses know the pertinent issues that affect the nursing field and the healthcare industry. Therefore, their involvement in policy development will lead to the development of effective policies that will solve healthcare issues. In this paper, various ways in which nurses can get involved in policy development and the challenges they face in implementing policies will be discussed in detail. Also, the strategies nurses can employ to overcome those challenges will be highlighted.

A discussion on the ways nurses can influence policies

Nurses can influence policy development in various ways. First, nurses can influence policy development through political activism. Nurses can become active politically by either assuming leadership positions in the healthcare system or alternatively, they can contact elected leaders on matters about the legislation affecting the healthcare industry (Abhicharttibutra, et al. 2014. 66). Through contact with the legislators, nurses can show how some of the existing health policies are ineffective and the need for the same to be modified to yield necessary results. The legislators will then draft a bill that will form the basis of the policy based on the nurse’s advice. Regarding taking leadership positions, nurses can take formal training in politics and run for a political office (Arabi, et al. 2014 p. 315). Once they get elected into these political offices, they can use their medical knowledge to draft effective health policies that will improve the lives of the people. This is the best option because nurses know all the issues that affect the nursing field. Therefore, when they are in the elective positions, it’s easy for them to mobilize other legislatures to address these issues through policy (Etowa, et al. 2016 p. 76). Nurses can also influence policy development by joining professional nursing organizations. In most cases, professional nursing organizations have lobbyists who bring pertinent nursing issues to the relevant authorities (Powell & Milstead, 2019 p. 193). By joining these professional nursing organizations, nurses will take part in lobbying for various issues affecting the field of nursing to be addressed through policy. Also, nurses can directly write to their state representatives about the health issues affecting the nursing field and clarify the need for such issues to be addressed through policy.

 

A discussion on challenges

One of the challenges that are faced when implementing policies at the ward unit is the lack of adequate skills in policy implementation. In most cases, before any policy is implemented, nurses and other stakeholders must undergo thorough training to equip themselves with necessary skills on how to implement that policy. This is so because nursing is a dynamic field since diseases emerge every day and new drugs are developed to treat these diseases (Patton, et al. 2018 p. 67). For example, when the government has come up with new policies on eradicating a new strain of a virus, nurses need to be trained on how to administer the immunization to patients in the wards and how to carry themselves during the immunization process. However, training of nurses is most often ignored because it’s assumed that nurses are medical officers who understand the implementation of policies. This makes it difficult to implement these policies in the ward. Also, resistant to change is another challenge. Normally, new policies introduce new behaviors and procedures to be implemented by nurses in the ward. However, most nurses are used to their old ways of doing things (Prezerakos, et al. 2015 p. 140). This makes it a challenge since nurses will see the implementation of the changes introduced by new policies as a burden and will not implement these changes. Even though most of the nurses will agree to implement these policies when their seniors ask them to, they will not implement them when they into the wards.

Strategies of overcoming the challenges

One of the strategies that nurses can employ to overcome these challenges is researching on the new health policies to be implemented to gain adequate knowledge and familiarize themselves with these policies. Nurses can’t be trained on every health policy introduced by the government (Wenji, et al. 2018 p. 45). Therefore, nurses need to take the initiative of researching these policies on their own and getting to know what is needed of them as nurses in the implementation of such policies (Wenji, et al. 2018 p. 45). Nurses can also familiarize themselves with the policies by attending conferences and seminars relevant to the nursing field. Through these seminars and conferences, nurses will get to be informed about the new policies that are to be implemented and the role that nurses will be required to play in the implementation of those policies (Wenji, et al. 2018 p. 45). Doing this will give nurses vast knowledge and adequate skills necessary for the implementation of these policies. Also, nurses should be prepared for change. Some nurses are resistant to change through policy because they are not prepared for it beforehand. Since the nursing field is ever-changing through policy, nurses need to come to reality in their field. Nurses can prepare for change by first, recognizing that the issues facing the nursing field are addressed by different actions that will require them to change. This will help them stay prepared for change which eliminates the barrier of resistant to change.

Conclusion

Nurses form the largest proportion of healthcare workers globally. This means that nurses play a vital role in the delivery of quality care. Therefore, the involvement of nurses in policy development is of great significance since they will advocate for the issues affecting patients and the healthcare industry to be effectively addressed through policy. Nurses can influence policy development in various ways, for example, through political activism where they contact legislators and inform of issues in the nursing field that need to be addressed through policy. Nurses can also influence policy development by joining professional nursing organizations. One of the challenges that are faced when implementing policies at the ward unit is the lack of adequate skills in policy implementation. One of the strategies that nurses can employ to overcome these challenges is researching on the new health policies to be implemented to gain adequate knowledge and familiarize themselves with these policies.

 

References

Asuquo, E., Etowa, J.B., Gifford, W.A. and Holmes, D., 2016. Nurses’ involvement in HIV policy formulation in Nigerian Health Care System. Journal of AIDS and Clinical Research, 7(7), p.1.

Abhicharttibutra, K., Kunaviktikul, W., Wichaikhum, O.A., Srisuphan, W. and Turale, S., 2014. Policy analysis of a Thai plan to increase the production of nurses and the quality of nursing education. Pacific Rim International Journal of Nursing Research, 18(1), pp.66-79.

Arabi, A., Rafii, F., Cheraghi, M.A. and Ghiyasvandian, S., 2014. Nurses’ policy influence: A concept analysis. Iranian journal of nursing and midwifery research, 19(3), p.315.

Etowa, J., Vukic, A., Aston, M., Boadu, N.Y., Helwig, M., Macdonald, D., Sikora, L., Wright, E., Babatunde, S. and George, A.N., 2016. Experiences of midwives and nurses in policy development in low-and middle-income countries: a systematic review protocol. JBI database of systematic reviews and implementation reports, 14(11), pp.72-82.

Powell, D.L. and Milstead, J.A., 2019. The Impact of Globalization: Nurses Influencing Global Health Policy. and PolitiCs A Nurse’s Guide, p.193.

Patton, R.M., Zalon, M.L. and Ludwick, R. eds., 2018. Nurses making policy: From bedside to boardroom. Springer Publishing Company.

Prezerakos, P., Galanis, P. and Moisoglou, I., 2015. The work environment of haemodialysis nurses and its impact on patients’ outcomes. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 21(2), pp.132-140.

Wenji, Z., Turale, S., Stone, T.E. and Petrini, M.A., 2015. Chinese nurses’ relief experiences following two earthquakes: implications for disaster education and policy development. Nurse education in practice, 15(1), pp.75-81.

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