Nurse’s Role in Health Policy: Action Plan

Abstract

Nursing specialists have no significant level of involvement in the process of health policy creation and implementation. Although there are three points of legal influence over any form of health policy, the nursing community is not equally incorporated in all of them. These layers are microsystems, mesosystems, and macrosystems, and they determine the scope of effect of a particular health policy. It is critical to ensure that professional nurses can be invaluable members of the policy making process by having access to all three systems. This can be achieved by bolstering the power of health policy nurses.

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Introduction

The overall role of a nursing professional in health policy creation is limited due to the lack of proper ways to get involved in the process. One should be aware that nurses possess an invaluable insight, which can be critical to consider in policy making. However, nurses do not have points of influence, which hinder the capability of both health policies and nurses. Nursing professionals should be able to be involved in the health policy making process on both the micro and macro levels. It can be achieved by strengthening the scope of influence of health policy nurses by enabling them to represent the nursing community on legislative matters.

Nurses in Health Policy

Nurses possess low levels of influence regarding health policy making. It is stated that regulatory and legislative processes do not consider the overall stance of the nursing professional community (Mason et al., 2016). The general of a nurse is a limited set of responsibilities related to the healthcare practice itself. The solution of the listed tasks is the primary condition for the implementation of a resource-saving policy for many thousands of highly qualified professionals in the field of human health management, which is especially important in the context of the global financial and economic crisis. Such tasks can, of course, be solved at the government level, but the acceleration of their solution would be facilitated by scientific developments in the field of forming a methodology for nursing diagnostics. The latter is a set of basic principles, research techniques, applied approaches, and methods.

It is important to note that the American Nurses Association plays an integral part in promoting the interest of the entire nursing community in the process of policy making. The given organization states: “thanks to their frontline role, nurses offer a unique, expert perspective on every aspect of the health care system, and have a key voice in ongoing efforts to improve public health” (“Health policy,” n.d., par. 2). In other words, health policies should be willing to involve nursing professionals in order to understand their unique perspective in regards to high-quality service and patient satisfaction. The professional nurses also understand the underlying intricacies of patent needs, and they operate from the evidence-based approach. The latter means that their expertise is not a product of subjective thinking, but rather solid scientific knowledge.

Health Policy Structure

In order to properly assess the nurses’ role in health policy making, one should be aware of the structural elements of the process. It is critical to note that there are three major systems, which guide the scope of influence of any particular policy. The United States healthcare system consists of microsystems, mesosystems, and macrosystems (“How healthcare policy is formed,” 2020). Macrosystems represent policies that affect the entire American population and public health by integrating systemic changes. Mesosystems mainly involve state-level modifications, which guide the local regulatory practices. Microsystems usually take place at the hospital or clinic level, where a specific organization decides to design a minor health policy for itself in cooperation with the relevant government agency. Only macrosystem-based changes undergo three branches of government, where the legislative branch is responsible for formulating the plan, and the executive branch approves it. The judicial branch is the last step in the integration process of a macrosystem policy, and it interprets the proposed legislation.

However, changes at the microsystem and mesosystems primarily dictate the operational and quality-level changes. They might be aimed at reducing human error, instructing staff, reducing practice variations, fulfilling requirements, and facilitating adherence to ethical conduct (“How healthcare policy is formed,” 2020). Therefore, a nursing community can have general influence over the policies on different levels, depending on the system of legislation. In addition, the access needs to be provided at all three levels of health policy implementation in order to allow the nursing community to make both systemic and local shifts.

Engaging professional health policy nurses will allow professionals to start looking for appropriate answers, in particular, developing a conceptual model of the policy influence process. This is necessary in order to study various options for the management of legal acts on its basis. At the same time, such a conceptual model means the terminological and theoretical description of the constituent parts of the impact on legislation, the disclosure of the sequence of certain actions, and the content and scope of activities. It is important to take into account the specifics of the conditions for organizing and carrying out work on health policy, taking into account both certain social characteristics of the population and the details of their work and lifestyle. The development of a conceptual model of health policy nurses will allow forming a paradigm of three-system influence as a set of fundamental theories and methods.

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Health Policy Nurse

The action plan for nurses to increase the overall involvement revolves around the expansion of responsibilities of health policy nurses. These are nursing professionals who are directly engaged in the policy making process (“What is a health policy nurse,” 2020). They represent the interests of the nursing community and factor-in various intricacies of the profession. However, the current state of nursing influence over policies is limited to Congress and healthcare agencies. There is a need for a large organization consisting of health policy nurses, who could be a branch of the American Nurses Association or a separate entity.

Another major step would involve the process of legal education and elevating legal literacy among nursing professionals in order to make them more engaging in the process of health policy making. In a structural and content sense, health policy nurses should be based on the principles of evidence-based medicine. They should provide an opportunity to prove certain decisions and formalize both the development of the actual solutions for certain standard situations and the process of making decisions in non-standard cases. Developing the concept and implementing mechanisms, as well as using the principles of evidence-based medicine, is essential in the activities of the management of policies of the industry as a whole. In the case of health policy, nurses can be defined as the emergence of evidence-based health care. These are systems of organizational and managerial measures that provide a comprehensive assessment of the correctness of the process and procedure for developing and making a certain decision, its adequacy to the current situation, and the degree of impact on the health of the population and the state of the health care system.

In this regard, the very procedure for analyzing information and synthesizing management decisions requires special attention in the framework of health policy nurses. Here one cannot do without classical statistics and a wide variety of organizational and managerial technologies used in complex social systems. As one of the most promising and requiring priority research areas, it is possible to propose the development of a conceptual model for managing people’s motivation to maintain health. However, the situation needs to be reviewed as soon as possible and radically. It is necessary not only to give priority to the health policy nurses’ management process but also to perceive this process as a complex multifactorial problem. This requires the complex efforts of specialists in the field of not only policy making but primarily in the field of healthcare organization and management in the social sphere.

Conclusion

In conclusion, one should understand that nurses possess limited access to affect the way health policies are made. There are three levels of influence that a nurse might have, which are microsystems, mesosystems, and macrosystems. It is critical to allow the nursing specialists to have a point of impact on all three levels. Therefore, the call for action is designed over health policy nurses, who are already equipped to increase the involvement of nursing specialists in health policy creation.

References

Health policy. (n.d.). 2020, Web.

How healthcare policy is formed. (2020). Web.

Mason, D. J., Dickson, E. L., Perez, A., & McLemore, M. R. (2016). Policy & politics in nursing and health care. Elsevier.

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What is a health policy nurse? (2020). Web.

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