The policy change I would like to introduce is the elimination of rotating shift work. The reason for such an action is that rotational schedule can cause severe harm for nurses’ physical and mental health. According to Petrov et al. (2014), around 15% of American employees, including nurses, participate in the night or rotating shift work. It may result in several health problems, such as heart disease, depression, obesity, and hypertension. Moreover, the study by Papantoniou et al. (2018) shows a correlation between shift work and the risk of cancer. It is evident that night shifts affect nurses’ performance and patient outcomes as well.
The model I would like to use to introduce change was suggested by Kurt Lewin. Cummings, Bridgman, and Brown (2016) state that it includes three steps, which are unfreeze, change, and refreeze. To implement this model, I would follow each of the stages it proposes. During the unfreeze one, I would prepare medical organizations for change by presenting the disadvantages of the current approach to nurses’ work hours.
During the change stage, I would communicate with people affected by the new policy to learn about the necessary adjustments and collect feedback. Finally, during refreeze, I would establish a flexible schedule that meets nurses’ needs. I believe that Lewin’s model is relevant to this policy change as it allows for the gradual transition from the ineffective policy to the more appropriate one.
Regulating Professional Practice
The roles of state Boards of Nursing (BONs) is developing standards of safe nursing practice, issuing licenses, monitoring caregivers’ compliance to laws, and the actions related to these issues (National Council of State Boards of Nursing, 2018). Professional organizations have a different role in regulating clinical practice as they provide caregivers with guidance, the ability to advocate for changes in the existing policies, and access to training programs (American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 2018). It means that state BONs are responsible for legal issues associated with practice, while professional organizations provide the opportunities for growth and development.
According to the American Nurses Credentialing Center (n.d.), there are several methods of credentialing. The major ones include certification and professional certification. The primary benefit of certification and professional certification in the protection of the professional scope of practice is that these methods are aimed to assure that a nurse has the necessary skills and knowledge to provide services. Their limitation of the certification is that it does not consider the existing legal and psychometric requirements. It is vital to note that professional certification is a voluntary process, which means that its holder desires to prove their professional and personal capacities. It means that this method of credentialing may be the most beneficial for protecting the public.
Genomics and Genetics
According to the World Health Organization (2018b), genetics is a study of heredity, which analyzes the composition and functioning of a single gene. Genomics, on the contrary, studies genes and interrelationships between them to evaluate their joint influence on the development of an organism. From the perspective of my specialty area, nurses can be involved in policy-making in the field of genomics by developing the practices that ensure excellent patient outcomes.
From studying individuals’ conditions, they may contribute to changes in care methods, such as genomics-based personalized therapy for individuals having diabetes. McCormick and Calzone (2016) note that caregivers may use genomic information to improve the quality and safety of their services by evaluating the risk of diseases and improving the selection of medications.
It is vital to mention that the research in the field may be tied to practice in various ways. For example, it may be used for screening for genetic predisposition and the choice of treatment based on the obtained data (Krier, Kalia, & Green, 2016). The organizations that are open to nurses in the field of genomics include the International Society of Nurses in Genetics (ISONG), the American Board of Medical Genetics, and the Global Genomics Nursing Alliance.
Policy Implications of Patient Safety Standards and Practices
Patient safety is a vital principle of high-quality healthcare that cannot be neglected. However, Leotsakos et al. (2014) note that as healthcare services are often provided in the context of an organization, safety standards may differ significantly. It is vital to establish a common understanding of the issue among medical professionals as it allows for a collaborative effort in achieving excellent patient outcomes. According to Morley and Cashell (2017), a partnership between health professionals allows for improvement in decision-making related to safety, the implementation of innovations, and compliance with the standards of drug prescription.
The policy implications from accepting that all humans make mistakes may be both positive and negative. On the one hand, such a perspective eliminates severe punitive measures for medical professionals, whose actions were determined by, for example, ethical issues rather than the lack of professional knowledge. On the other hand, such viewpoint may result in the absense of punitive actions for those employees that are involved in regular medical errors due to the lack of qualifications. I would approach healthcare system leaders and employers by showing that it is vital to change the punitive policies from punishment-oriented to those that consider each incident individually (Garrouste-Orgeas, Flaatten, & Moreno, 2016).
Global Health Agenda
The World Health Organization’s (WHO) global health agenda aims to set the organization’s perspective on the future of health (World Health Organization, 2018a). It is designed to improve healthcare systems, enhance the public knowledge on health-related issues, eliminate gaps in social justice and responsibility, and increase medical institutions’ capacities to provide care. The opportunities to develop an interdisciplinary approach to these questions and advance the WHO’s agenda are determined by advocating for changes in the existing policies. For example, it is vital to ensure that all practices address diversity issues and implement a sensitive approach to care (Tan & Li, 2016).
In my organization, multiculturalism is yet not a question of consideration; many medical professionals do not address this issue in their services. It results in misunderstandings related to the patient’s cultural preferences in care, as well as the possible background of their health-related practices. Moreover, there is a lack of diversity in the workforce too, which is a common problem for many medical organizations (Mensah & Sommers, 2016). The application of multiculturalism policies would address these problems and improve the staff’s dedication and patient outcomes.
In this course, I have learned that an advanced practice nurse plays a significant role in the establishment of diversity practices and the development of the appropriate approach to care. Caregivers are in a position where they can advocate for changes as they interact with patients daily. It means that nurses can influence the global approach to care by suggesting practices that eliminate the existing challenges raised by diversity issues.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2018). Why Join AANP? Web.
American Nurses Credentialing Center. (n.d.). Credentialing definitions. Web.
Cummings, S., Bridgman, T., & Brown, K. G. (2016). Unfreezing change as three steps: Rethinking Kurt Lewin’s legacy for change management. Human Relations, 69(1), 33-60.
Garrouste-Orgeas, M., Flaatten, H., & Moreno, R. (2016). Understanding medical errors and adverse events in ICU patients. Intensive Care Medicine, 42(1), 107-109.
Krier, J. B., Kalia, S. S., & Green, R. C. (2016). Genomic sequencing in clinical practice: Applications, challenges, and opportunities. Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, 18(3), 299-312.
Leotsakos, A., Zheng, H., Croteau, R., Loeb, J. M., Sherman, H., Hoffman, C.,… Duguid, M. (2014). Standardization in patient safety: The WHO High 5s project. International Journal for Quality in Health Care, 26(2), 109-116.
McCormick, K. A., & Calzone, K. A. (2016). The impact of genomics on health outcomes, quality, and safety. Nursing Management, 47(4), 23-26.
Mensah, M. O., & Sommers, B. D. (2016). The policy argument for healthcare workforce diversity. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 31(11), 1369-1372.
Morley, L., & Cashell, A. (2017). Collaboration in health care. Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, 48(2), 207-216.
National Council of State Boards of Nursing. (2018). About U.S. Boards of Nursing. Web.
Papantoniou, K., Devore, E. E., Massa, J., Strohmaier, S., Vetter, C., Yang, L.,… & Schernhammer, E. S. (2018). Rotating night shift work and colorectal cancer risk in the nurses’ health studies. International Journal of Cancer, 143(11), 2709-2717.
Petrov, M. E., Clark, C. B., Molzof, H. E., Johnson Jr, R. L., Cropsey, K. L., & Gamble, K. L. (2014). Sleep strategies of night-shift nurses on days off: Which ones are most adaptive? Frontiers in Neurology, 5. Web.
Tan, N., & Li, S. (2016). Multiculturalism in healthcare: A review of current research into diversity found in the healthcare professional population and the patient population. International Journal of Medical Students, 4(3), 112-119.
World Health Organization. (2018a). Global health agenda. Web.
World Health Organization. (2018b). WHO definitions of genetics and genomics. Web.