Health promotion has been a major priority for healthcare providers for several decades, but many nursing professionals still fail to understand their role in this process. Sharma (2017) stresses that an advanced nursing professional has responsibilities in such areas as planning and evaluating health services and promotion programs, communicating health needs and concerns, applying research in their practice and health education. An advanced practice generalist has to be an advocate for patients’ needs, rights, concerns, and so on, which can be achieved through several channels and certain steps undertaken at different levels (Pender, Murdaugh, & Parsons, 2014). An advanced practice generalist in the area of Primary Family Practice should focus on the needs of children and families. However, it is vital to be able to consider these concerns in a larger context.
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Luquis and Paz (2014) state that family nursing practitioners tend to see their communication with families and their recommendations concerning healthy lifestyles the primary way to achieve their goals associated with health promotion. Clearly, effective communication with families can help nursing practitioners identify the most urgent needs of patients or the overall community. It is noteworthy that this communication can be rather difficult especially when it comes to urban settings where people are often unaware of various resources available or feel disconnected from the community and the healthcare system (“Community health nursing,” 2009). Nevertheless, communication, education, and training are only elements of a combination of measures to undertake. The effective application of research is essential as it enables nursing generalists to choose the most efficient approach to the problem, identify different solutions that have already been developed in other places and settings, etc. (Pender et al., 2014). Therefore, an advanced nurse generalist should be able to implement research and apply it to certain practice.
Another, important component of health promotion is the collaboration with other healthcare professionals at different levels (Martinez et al., 2017). First, it is necessary to collaborate with different healthcare professionals when developing plans and programs aimed at enhancing health promotion in a community, state or even nationwide. Advancing nursing practice often requires close collaboration with physicians, administrative staff, management, and so on. Shihab (2011) mentions the major levels that have to be involved. These levels include families, healthcare facilities, communities, states, the entire nation. The impact at these levels is mainly made through the collaboration with other healthcare professionals and organizations. Nurse generalists should address nursing organizations, as well as various health-related organizations, to develop and implement programs and plans associated with health promotion. Organizations often have the necessary resources and channels to reach all the involved stakeholders. They can also be an influential partner when addressing policy-makers.
To sum up, nurse advocates for health promotion should communicate with patients and their families as well as collaborate with various stakeholders, including healthcare professionals, nursing and health-related organizations, policy-makers, etc. It is essential to develop and implement programs that can help promote public health. It is also crucial to apply research properly in nursing practice as it can equip the health promotion advocate with efficient frameworks and strategies that have already proved to be effective in other settings. At that, it is still necessary to remember that effective communication with patients and their families is the key to success of any program. This communication ensures the focus on the most urgent issues and concerns that have to be addressed.
Community health nursing: A practical view [Video file]. (2009).
Luquis, R., & Paz, H. (2014). Attitudes about and practices of health promotion and prevention among primary care providers. Health Promotion Practice, 16(5), 745-755.
Martinez, C., Bacigalupe, G., Cortada, J., Grandes, G., Sanchez, A., Pombo, H., & Bully, P. (2017). The implementation of health promotion in primary and community care: a qualitative analysis of the ‘Prescribe Vida Saludable’ strategy. BMC Family Practice, 18(1).
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Pender, N., Murdaugh, C., & Parsons, M. A. (2014). Health promotion in nursing practice (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.
Sharma, M. (2017). Theoretical foundations of health education and health promotion (3rd ed.). Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Learning.
Shihab, V. (2011). Suzanne Jackson on understanding health promotion [Video file].