Health care policy is a hot topic in politics right now, and it is crucial that nurses join the conversation. In a recent article, Advance Healthcare Network for Nurses argues that “all too often, the body of people making decisions and planning societal changes lacks a clinical healthcare background.” However, one university has created a program to help change that.
The University of New Mexico College of Nursing in Albuquerque has partnered with The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop a PhD program intended to help nurses not only engage in but also contribute to health policy discussions and decisions. As Nancy Ridenour, PhD, RN, APRN, BC, FAAN, dean and professor of UNM College said, “Nurses are in the best position to inform policy makers because they’re on the front line.”
The program uses real clinical experience and research to investigate and learn about health policy. Understanding the needs of people and populations is a crucial part of successful healthcare reform. According to Ridenour, “We teach our students how to assess the needs of the local community.” Giving nurses the tools to be able to contribute to healthcare reform and make positive changes for populations throughout the country is a powerful way to improve healthcare for all people. This program motivates nurses to become more involved and to make an impact on policy change on the local level, which Ridenour argues is just as important as the national level. Since nurses have significant knowledge of clinical data and research, they have the power to inform thoughtful decisions regarding public health.
Jones & Bartlett Learning understands the importance of nurses as leaders in health policy and reform. The recently published Health Policy and Politics: A Nurses Guide, Fifth Edition by Jeri A. Milstead covers the entire health policy process, from agenda setting to policy and program evaluation with expanded information about the breadth and depth of policy making, the impact of social media, economics, finance, and other current topics.
New to the Fifth Edition
- Updated case studies
- New chapter on inter-professional practice, education, and research
- Coverage of the Affordable Care Act and other laws that affect consumer health care and the organization of the health care system
In addition, each new print copy includes Navigate 2 Advantage Access that unlocks a comprehensive and interactive eBook, student practice activities and assessments, a full suite of instructor resources, and learning analytics reporting tools.
Author Jeri Milstead firmly believes that nurses need to have a “voice at the table” of health care reform, as quoted in a recent webinar on the new Fifth Edition. In this webinar, she discusses how nurses can be more involved in shaping health policy and reform. Watch the webinar now: