The Role of the RN/APRN in Policy-Making

The Role of the RN/APRN in Policy-Making

Post (Discussion) an explanation of at least two opportunities that exist for RNs and APRNs to actively participate in policy-making. 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 to participate in policy-making. Be specific and provide examples.

By Day X of Week X
Respond to at least two of your colleagues’* posts by suggesting additional opportunities or recommendations for overcoming the challenges described by your colleagues. Offer suggestions how nurses need to be involved as APRN, be specific as to what one can do as a member of various committees/groups to influence policy. Two references (sources) for each student respond. ONE to 1 1/2 paper long on each respond.
 
Rubric Detail for Grading.
Select Grid View or List View to change the rubric’s layout.
Name: NURS_6050_Module04_Week08_Respond to 2 colleagues_Rubric
 
First Response 17 (17%) – 18 (18%)
Response exhibits synthesis, critical thinking, and application to practice settings.
Communication is professional and respectful to colleagues.
Responses to faculty questions are fully answered, if posed.
Provides clear, concise opinions and ideas that are supported by at least two scholarly sources.
Demonstrates synthesis and understanding of learning objectives.
Response is effectively written in standard, edited English. 0 (0%) – 12 (12%)
Response may not be on topic and lacks depth.
Responses posted in the discussion lack effective professional communication.
Responses to faculty questions are missing.
No credible sources are cited.
Second Response 16 (16%) – 17 (17%)
Response exhibits synthesis, critical thinking, and application to practice settings.
Communication is professional and respectful to colleagues.
Responses to faculty questions are fully answered, if posed.
Provides clear, concise opinions and ideas that are supported by at least two scholarly sources.
Demonstrates synthesis and understanding of learning objectives.
Response is effectively written in standard, edited English. 0 (0%) – 11 (11%)
Response may not be on topic and lacks depth.
Responses posted in the discussion lack effective professional communication.
Responses to faculty questions are missing.
No credible sources are cited.
0 (0%) – 0 (0%) 0 (0%) – 0 (0%) 0 (0%) – 0 (0%)
Does not meet requirements for participation by posting on 3 different days.
Total Points: 100
Name: NURS_6050_Module04_Week08_Rubric
Respond to Student #1 SD’s discussion.
According to Milstead & Short (2019), “Policy is a consciously chosen course of action: a law, regulation, rule, procedure, administrative action, incentive, or voluntary practice of governments and other institutions” (p. 2). Because there are nearly 4 million nurses in the United States, it creates a potentially profound influence on policy (The Nursing Profession’s Potential Impact on Policy and Politics, 2016). Nurses have a broad understanding and appreciation of health needs and delivery due to their vast knowledge of clients’ needs, interaction with health care consumers, and provision of essential services (Nursing Advocacy, n.d.). Registered nurses (RNs) and advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) can actively participate in policymaking by joining a professional nursing organization or by writing their state representatives (The Nursing Profession’s Potential Impact on Policy and Politics, 2016), also known as lobbying. Professional associations expand a nurse’s perspective toward a broader view of health and professional issues (Milstead & Short, 2019, p. 8).
Challenges facing RNs and APRNs from actively participating in policymaking include reluctance to do more than take care of patients, have no time or interest in politics, feel ill-equipped, and lack of awareness of the legislative process (Health Care Policy: the Nurse’s Crucial Role, 2020).
To face these challenges, start by registering to vote at www.eac.gov, then looking up their state’s elected representatives in Congress and how they are being represented (Health Care Policy: the Nurse’s Crucial Role, 2020). Next, review the www.aacn.org website for a thorough explanation of the legislative process (How a Bill Becomes a Law, 2020). These options may spark an interest to allow the RN or APRN to establish contacts with legislators and agency directors to forge ongoing relationships with elected and appointed officials and their staff in hopes of gaining credibility (Milstead & Short, 2019, p. 11).
The following strategies are available to advocate for joining professional nursing organizations and lobbying: looking up healthcare bills on congress.gov to stay informed on healthcare nationwide and attending the local board of nursing meetings. These will keep an RN or APRN up to date on legislation. Next, promote professional nursing organizations that encourage nursing specialty areas (i.e., critical care, emergency nursing, etc.) and provide state representative contact information and a template of what correspondence should look like.
References
Health care policy: The nurse’s crucial role. (2020, January 21). American Academy of Ambulatory Care Nursing. Retrieved October 19, 2020, from https://www.aaacn.org/volunteer/teams/legislative/health-care-policy-nurses-crucial-role
How a bill becomes a law. (2020, January 21). American Academy of Ambulatory Care Nursing. Retrieved October 19, 2020, from https://www.aaacn.org/volunteer/teams/legislative/how-bill-becomes-law
Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Health policy and politics: A nurse’s guide (6th ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Nursing advocacy. (n.d.). ANA. Retrieved October 19, 2020, from https://www.nursingworld.org/practice-policy/advocacy/
The nursing profession’s potential impact on policy and politics. (2016, September 22). American Nurse. Retrieved October 19, 2020, from https://www.myamericannurse.com/nursing-professions-potential-impact-policy-politics/
Respond to Student #2 RD’s discussion.
During my undergraduate nursing education, I remember being taught how important it is that nurses get involved in policies regarding the nursing profession. However, I’ll admit that it wasn’t until this class that I really understood the magnitude of that.  In fact, I tend to stay away from politics all together out of the frustration.  This class has shed some light on the inner workings of policy in a way that I have begun to understand. According to Milstead & Short (2019), “To be effective in the process, RNs and APRNs must understand how the process works and at which points the greatest impact might be made” (p. 97).
I have learned that there are many ways that we, as nurses, can participate in policy making.  For example, I believe that all nurses should become involved in a professional organization.  As nurses, we know that advocacy is a big part of our job. The American Nurses Association (n.d.) states that “nurses instinctively advocate for their patients, in their workplaces, and in their communities; but legislative and political advocacy is no less important to advancing the profession and patient care” (para. 1). Professional nursing organizations play a big role in policy making by providing the tools, resources, and contacts to influence legislators. Currently, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners is pushing for adequate access to personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic (American Association of Nurse Practitioners [AANP], 2020).
Another way that nurses can participate in the policy making process to is actively lobby for changes. Milstead & Short (2019), define lobbying as “the act of influencing-the art of persuading-a governmental entity to achieve a specific legislative or regulatory outcome” (p. 45). For example, National Nurses United has been lobbying for safe patient ratio laws throughout the United States (National Nurses United, 2019).
It is important to note that nurses should be prepared to come across some challenges when participating in policy making. For example, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) promotes more full-practice environment states to allow nurse practitioners (NPs) to practice to the full extent of their scope of practice (American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 2019).  However, they may face push-back from other professional organizations that represent physicians.  The American Academy of Family Physicians argues that NPs are not equally trained or educated to function as primary care providers (Martin, 2019).  Additionally, National Nurses United has faced opposition from hospitals that argue that ratios would cost too much money and reduce flexible staffing options. Nurses need to remain professional when facing such challenges. A great way to overcome these challenges is to provide the facts through evidence-based research.  For example, there is plenty of research to show that allowing NPs to serve as primary care providers increases access to healthcare and decreases cost. Furthermore, research proves that staffing ratios increase patient safety and nurse satisfaction which also lowers cost in the long run.
In addition to these opportunities there are many other strategies nurses can use to better advocate for policy changes. I suggest joining committees at work, writing letters to legislators, or even applying for a seat on your local board of nursing (BON).  Most hospitals have many committees nurses can join to voice their thoughts on policies and plans on a smaller scale. Writing a letter to a legislator can give nurses a voice on larger issues. For example, National Nurses United have a link on their website to send a letter regarding their view on ratios.  Lastly, when researching the North Carolina Board of Nursing, I found that the majority of their members are currently practicing nurses and that you can apply for a position on the board online with the nomination from another nurse.
References
American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2019). Scope of practice for nurse practitioners. Retrieved September 27, 2020, from https://www.aanp.org/advocacy/advocacy-resource/position-statements/scope-of-practice-for-nurse-practitioners
American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2020). Personal protective equipment. Retrieved October 20, 2020, from https://www.aanp.org/advocacy/advocacy-resource/position-statements/personal-protective-equipment
American Nurses Association. (n.d.). Nursing advocacy. ANA. Retrieved October 20, 2020, from https://www.nursingworld.org/practice-policy/advocacy/
Martin, S. (2019, September 3). Not all clinicians are trained equally. American Academy of Family Physicians. Retrieved October 20, 2020, from https://www.aafp.org/news/blogs/inthetrenches/entry/20190903itt-differences.html
Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Health policy and politics: A nurse’s guide (6th ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.
National Nurses United. (2019, August 23). Rn-to-patient staffing ratios | national nurses united. Retrieved September 25, 2020, from https://www.nationalnursesunited.org/ratios
MY PERSONAL DISCUSSION
Florida is one of few states in the United States, where residents lack access to quality healthcare services because of some of its laws and regulations. It is one of those where the government is more concerned about political mandates than the health and wellbeing of the citizens despite the high shortage of clinicians and other healthcare workers to meet the needs of the population. In this regard, the state provides several opportunities for registered nurses (RNs) and advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) to fulfill their advocacy responsibilities and contribute to health promotion and disease prevention and management roles at the primary care level,
The significance of permitting RNs and APRNs to engage in the scope of nursing practice that reflects their depth and breadth of their education, training, and experience is one of the major policymaking opportunities for these practitioners in Florida. According to Kaplan (2016), this legislation is required to increase access to care for rural populations, increase patient’s access to alternative care services, and reduce the cost of healthcare services by the government. Another policymaking opportunity in Florida is RNs and APRNs’ support for laws for increasing the number of federally-funded substance abuse prevention programs and strengthening the health systems’ capacity to prevent mental disorders in the state. In this regard, such initiatives would permit relevant stakeholders to identify and implement initiatives that deliver effective and preventive mental and physical health programs to all residents of the state. In essence, APRNs and RNs can support the current efforts of Florida’s Board of Nursing and Florida Nursing Association to ensure the passage of legislation that allows them to practice to the full extent of their training and increased number of federally-funded mental health programs.
Meanwhile, registered nurses and their advanced practice counterparts must recognize some of the challenges that exist with active participation in policymaking. According to Kung and Rudner Lugo (2015), some of these challenges include limited resources, perception of the roles of nurses in healthcare, and lack of structures to support their involvement in the policy development process. Despite the pervasiveness of these challenges, RNs and APRNs can overcome them through the integration of their advocacy roles in their practice and education of the policymaking processes. Also, RNs and APRNs who are involved in nursing education and research activities to invest time and resources into policy development initiatives and use their experience to prepare future practitioners for the same engagement. Hence, nurses can overcome the challenges and barriers that exist in the different aspects of policymaking through their understanding of the procedures and facilitators and networking skills to liaise with relevant partners.
Finally, RNs and APRNs can increase their advocacy or improve their communication of the opportunities for their colleagues to participate in policymaking through various strategies. According to Shariff (2015), nurses can enhance their participation in policy development through their partnerships with relevant healthcare stakeholders and active engagement in their professional associations. It is a strategy that requires identifying and supporting initiatives that increase the media coverage of their issues that are shaping legislative activities in Florida. An example of this strategy is RNs and APRNs’ support for legislators and the election of public health officials who share their interests and position on the issue. Another effective strategy is for communicating this opportunity is a knowledge sharing in the workplace. In this regard, nurse practitioners can share the advocacy campaigns and call-to-action information from the Florida Nurses Association and other relevant ones with their colleagues via their organization’s news bulletin board. Finally, this communication and advocacy strategy can be executed through presentations during meetings and permission junior cadre nurses to campaign for relevant policies by nurse leaders.
References
Kaplan, L. (2016). Florida NPs advocate for controlled substance prescriptive authority. The Nurse Practitioner, 41(5), 14-16.
Kung, Y. M., & Rudner Lugo, N. (2015). Political advocacy and practice barriers: A survey of Florida APRNs. Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 27(3), 145-151.
Shariff, N. J. (2015). Empowerment model for nurse leaders’ participation in health policy development: an east African perspective. BMC Nursing, 14(1), 31.
Learning Resources
Required Readings
Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Health policy and politics: A nurse’s guide (6th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Chapter 5, “Public Policy Design” (pp. 87–95 only)
Chapter 8, “The Impact of EHRs, Big Data, and Evidence-Informed Practice” (pp. 137–146)
Chapter 9, “Interprofessional Practice” (pp. 152–160 only)
Chapter 10, “Overview: The Economics and Finance of Health Care” (pp. 183–191 only)
American Nurses Association (ANA). (n.d.). Advocacy. Retrieved September 20, 2018, from https://www.nursingworld.org/practice-policy/advocacy/
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (n.d.). Step by step: Evaluating violence and injury prevention policies: Brief 4: Evaluating policy implementation. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/injury/pdfs/policy/Brief%204-a.pdf
Congress.gov. (n.d.). Retrieved September 20, 2018, from https://www.congress.gov/
Klein, K. J., & Sorra, J. S. (1996). The challenge of innovation implementation. Academy of Management Review, 21(4), 1055–1080. doi:10.5465/AMR.1996.9704071863
Sacristán, J., & Dilla, T. D. (2015). No big data without small data: Learning health care systems begin and end with the individual patient. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, 21(6), 1014–1017.
Tummers, L., & Bekkers, V. (2014). Policy implementation, street level bureaucracy, and the importance of discretion. Public Management Review, 16(4), 527–547. doi:10.1080/14719037.2013.841978

Click here  to ORDER an A++ paper from our MASTERS and DOCTORATE WRITERS: 

 

Get a 25 % discount on an order above $ 100
Use the following coupon code :
Nursing25