The future of nursing
With the development and implementation of new health care reforms in the United States. The role of nurses is changing and nurses are assuming new duties and responsibilities. The Affordable Care Act which was signed into law by President Barrack Obama in 2010 is among the reforms that are driving these changes. The act advocates for new health care delivery models that seek to achieve quality health care. The nurse is at the heart of this process.
Nursing will no doubt become a powerful workforce in the health profession. The future nurse will spearhead the transformation of the health sector from a health provider based and fee for service delivery model to a team-based patient-centered health care delivery model. Nurses will need to acquire more skills and competencies to assume new roles.
The new roles include; data analysis to improve outcomes, care coordination with other health professionals and offering patient-centered care to patients. Data analysis includes thoroughly analyzing patients’ information to access their health status and progress. It is done both at the individual and the population level.
The nurses should gather both clinical and financial data to track the treatment and functionality of the patient. This data is essential in engaging patients. It helps discern when to change medication or offer more medication. It also helps to detect any behavior changes. Data analysis includes gathering and analyzing data, it is essential during disease outbreaks at the community level. It helps discern low risk, moderate risk, and high-risk individuals to offer care accordingly.
Care coordination is also one of the emerging roles in nursing. Nurses are the primary caregivers. They interact more with patients and at times act as a link between the patient and other health practitioners. The care coordination role entails nurses professionally interacting with other practitioners to provide quality care. It also includes adapting to transition management mechanisms to avoid errors. Nurses should have good communication skills for easy interaction with patients and practitioners.
Also, nurses will engage in patient-centered health care. This includes integrating the will of the patient in the decision-making process. This concept understands that patients know themselves best and education and support should be offered to them by nurses and other health practitioners to maximize the benefits of health care. The future nurse will play a vital role in the delivery of health care. Apart from offering patient-centered care, nurses will also engage in care coordination and data analysis to ensure the provision of quality health care.
Institute of Medicine (US). Committee on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Initiative on the Future of Nursing. The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2011.
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Gallagher, Rita Munley, and Patricia A. Rowell. “Claiming the future of nursing through nursing-sensitive quality indicators.” Nursing Administration Quarterly 27.4 (2003): 273-284.