Federal Policy that would potentially affect the actions of a nurse leader (ICU RN)
Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005
Find the attached document here:https://pso.ahrq.gov/legislation/act
The Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 was signed to law by the Senate, the House of Representatives in Congress and the President of the United States of America in July 2005. This Act was developed and signed to law as an amendment to title IX of the Public Health Service Act to not only reduce the incidence of events that adversely affect the safety of patients but also to provide for the improvement of patient safety(Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 2005). In order to enhance the data available to assess health care quality issues and resolve patient safety, this act has established a voluntary reporting system designed to encourage the reporting and analysis of medical errors. Under a product known as Patient Safety Work product, this Act provides for confidentiality protections and federal privilege for patient safety information.
Environment or Spheres of Influence that Nurses Act to Influence Policy
The four main spheres of influence for nurses in policy advocacy or nurses act in to influence policy include the government, associations and interest groups, the workforce and the workplace, and the community(Mason, Leavitt, & Chaffee, 2014). Action taken within these spheres of influence is what eventually shapes policy that has the power to influence social determinants of health and the health system as a whole.
How this Policy became such an Important Area of Concern
The reality that nurses experience not only adverse work safety climate but also significant psychological and physical demands while on duty flagged patient safety as an important area of concern. The safety of patients is heavily reliant on the safety of nurses from workplace-induced illnesses and injuries. Both acute and long-term health of nurses can be impaired by the hazards of nursing work causing problems in their mental health, infections, injuries, and in the long term causing problems such as neoplastic, metabolic, and cardiovascular diseases(Trinkoff, et al., 2011).
Challenges Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 will present for me in my Role as a Nurse Leader
As a nurse leader in the Intensive Care Unit, the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 poses challenges for me in my immediate work context, in relation to the characteristics of the of the organization that I work for and in relation to the external factors of the health care industry in general. From these three broad areas, I am likely to face challenges in managing both the safety of nurses and consequent safety of patients because there are several levels in my work context that hold factors capable of producing threats to nurses’ safety while on the job.These factors are brought on by the numerous changes taking place outside the organization, it is necessary to acknowledge the technological advancements and the consequent increase in the usage of complex technological innovations. This is in addition to the fact that at the organization, the nursing workforce is generally older and the number of elderly patients that is very sick keeps going up.
In the nursing context, various workplace stressors are responsible for injuries and diseases in the environment of nursing work. At the organizational level for instance, there is constant pressure to improve the turnaround time for patient care, to downsize and employ nurses under alternative arrangements. In the face of these pressures at the organizational level, pushing for higher patient loads and early dischargesrequires that my job as a nurse leader in the Intensive Care Unit be that of ensuring a functional balance(Burkhardt, Nathaniel, & Walton, 2014). This is in light of the requirements of the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 requiring that nurses be healthy and well rested in order to provide empathic care and vigilant to monitoring to patients.The challenges will be primarily related to the complex relationship between health and safety and work schedules. This will require that I work with both the management and my team at the Intensive Care Unit to ensure that safety comes first whereas performance remains high by keeping shift work at a minimum while mitigating the risks associated with working long hours, and developing coping strategies for the employer and for the workers.
Examples of Strategies Nurses Could use to Influence Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005
For effective action in influencing this policy, nurses ought to employ the following advocacy strategies: influence the implementation of this health policy, change or veto proposals by others or initiate new health policy proposals that cater for the identified loopholes(Mason, Leavitt, & Chaffee, 2014). These strategies can be employed from in many ways from making a call about an issue or writing a letter to getting one elected to public office. These actions can also constitute working with the media to draw attention to the problem and proposed solutions, or describing the merits of possible solutions to the problems associated with this policy. Testifying at public meetings about the problem, and lobbying decision makers for or against proposed changes under consideration regarding this policy can also work effectively.
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