Shadow Health Papers
How has Healthcare Policy and Analysis impacted your knowledge, attitude, beliefs, perceptions about nurse engagement in policy advocacy and politics?
Healthcare is a basic human need that is shaped by many factors, especially health policy. Health policy involves the plans, decisions, and actions that are taken to achieve specific health outcomes within a society (Porche, 2023). Healthcare policy is observed to shape and protect the health and well-being of populations in today’s increasingly complex healthcare system. For example, healthcare policies improve the distribution of resources to handle emerging healthcare challenges like pandemics and chronic illnesses (Anders, 2021). Additionally, this aspect of care is crucial in establishing guidelines that govern the management of healthcare institutions and the entire healthcare system of the country. For nurses and other healthcare providers, understanding policy matters is critical in ensuring the delivery of quality care and building the future of health.
Healthcare Policy and Analysis
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Nurses have a role in advocating for policies to improve the well-being of patients and disadvantaged populations. These individuals have a lot to offer because they are directly involved in the care of patients and have experienced health policy failures during routine patient care (Anders, 2021). For example, nurses care for socially and economically disadvantaged groups who are less likely to be in good health. Understanding how these problems impact patients have increased my interest in matters of health policy and how changes can improve patient outcomes. Secondly, I have learned about the challenges nurses face when dealing with advocacy issues. For instance, nurses have limited access to policymakers and have few positions in leadership to impact their role in healthcare politics (Dawes, 2020). Understanding these challenges and how they can be solved has changed my attitude toward healthcare policy and improved the belief that nurses can impact healthcare delivery through advocacy.
Theoretical and Scientific Foundations of Nursing Research: The importance of human subject protection
Becoming an effective advocate in matters of policy is one of the ways nurses can navigate upstream. Learning about healthcare policy and politics has improved my knowledge on key areas of focus in terms of healthcare policy. For instance, social determinants of health are shaped by the distribution of money, power, and resources at various levels (Williams et al., 2018). Learning about these determinants has improved my attitude toward healthcare policy and politics. I believe nurses are in a position to become social policy advocates and key players in addressing other emerging issues in healthcare. For example, a deeper analysis of the COVID-19 pandemic helped me to see how nurses played a key role in advocating for better working conditions (Anders, 2021). Advocacy led to the creation of employment settings with better working conditions for healthcare providers.
Doctoral nurses have a professional, ethical, and social responsibility to advocate for optimal healthcare and working conditions for healthcare providers. One of the key takeaways from this course that can help to improve my role in matters of healthcare policy and politics is aligning with the right people in power. Advocacy requires the nurse to know the key stakeholders and have people in place that can influence the support from these stakeholders (Dawes, 2020). For example, creating friendships with local leaders and knowing the leaders at the personal level can increase the chances of influencing healthcare policy. Secondly, doctoral nurses can assume leadership positions and assume public office to ensure they are directly involved in politics. The involvement of nurses in politics can ensure they are closer to those that make healthcare policies and create an impact through direct political activities (Wilson et al., 2022). I will consider assuming top leadership positions and perhaps running for state office where I can be able to improve public health through the lens of politics.
Anders R. L. (2021). Engaging nurses in health policy in the era of COVID-19. Nursing Forum, 56(1), 89–94. https://doi.org/10.1111/nuf.12514
Dawes, D. E. (2020). The political determinants of health. Johns Hopkins University Press.
Porche, D. J. (2023). Health policy: Applications for nurses and other healthcare professionals (3rd ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Williams, S. D., Phillips, J. M., & Koyama, K. (2018). Nurse advocacy: Adopting a health in all policies approach. Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 23(3). https://doi.org/10.3912/OJIN.Vol23No03Man01
Wilson, D. M., Underwood, L., Kim, S., Olukotun, M., & Errasti-Ibarrondo, B. (2022). How and why nurses became involved in politics or political action, and the outcomes or impacts of this involvement. Nursing Outlook, 70(1), 55–63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.outlook.2021.07.008
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