The significant part of every DNP’s mission is to bring positive changes into the healthcare system both on the local and state levels. That is why doctors of nursing practice (DNPs) need to get a complex education on various aspects of public health. Waxman (2018) believes that economic literacy is necessary for a DNP prepared nurse “in order to serve as a policy advocate, to provide leadership, and to foster evidence-based practice” (p. 1). It is necessary for a DNP to understand how strategic planning and financing work in the healthcare system to be able to develop quality improvement projects.
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Budget development is a fundamental procedure in healthcare project management that is mostly completed on the development stages but is still audited through the whole process and even after it. Mukherjee, Rahahleh, and Lane (2016) offer a four-stage framework of the process of budgeting that includes “identification, development, selections, and post-audit” (p. 58). The goals and objectives are set at the identification stage, while strategic planning takes place during the development stage. These stages are followed by selections and, later, post-audit that identifies whether the goals were met within the planned costs.
Behavior therapy based on telehealth technology is getting more popular today, especially for chronic disease in-home patients. Rutledge et al. (2018) believe that nurse practitioners can be trained to deliver this type of therapy in a more cost-effective way than mental health professionals. The exemplary project is an educational course on telehealth for certified nurses in a small healthcare institution that serves a rural community to be able to provide behavior therapy for patients with chronic disease. The course includes four weekly 1,5-hour videoconferences with a mental health practitioner. A local DNP trained nurse is responsible for project management.
Assuming that the course utilizes on-site digital equipment, there is no expense on the technology. That is why the project budgeting consists of two chief sources of expenditure – paid working hours of a mental health practitioner (6 lecture hours + 12 hours for course preparation) and a DNP for project management (16 total including strategic planning, budget development, audit, and supervision). Thus, the total cost of the course is $1250, including $450 for a mental health practitioner working hours ($25*18), and $800 for a DNP’s working hours ($50*16). A further retrospective study is needed to assess the financial benefits of the institution.
Mukherjee, T., Rahahleh, N. A., & Lane, W. (2016). The capital budgeting process of healthcare organizations: A review of surveys. Journal of Healthcare Management, 61(1), 58-76. Web.
Rutledge, T., Atkinson, J. H., Holloway, R., Chircop-Rollick, T., Dandrea, J., Garfin, S. R., … Slater, M. (2018). Randomized controlled trial of nurse-delivered cognitive-behavioral therapy versus supportive psychotherapy telehealth interventions for chronic back pain. The Journal of Pain, 19(9), 1033–1039. Web.
Waxman, KT. (2018). Financial and business management for the doctor of nursing practice. NY, NY: Springer Publishing Company.
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