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Improved Nursing Practice of the Future

Contribution of the Future of Nursing Report

The Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) report “Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health” explored the roles, responsibilities, and education required for the nursing practice to have to address the changing needs and demands of fore care. Nurses make the single largest workforce segment, and because they interact with patients daily, they are required to have unique abilities and valuable insights to contribute to the profession as a whole. With the passing of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the United States has a variety of opportunities to transform the entire system of healthcare and provide high-quality, affordable, and accessible services (IOM, 2011). The work of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Committee Initiative on the Future of Nursing and the Institute of Medicine should be discussed to evaluate the role of state-based actions in healthcare.

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The Foundations’ and the IOM’s work was targeted at “ensuring that nurses could practice the complete extent of their education and training, improve the level of their education, have various opportunities to assume leadership positions, and facilitate the improvement of data collection for workforce planning” (IOM, 2011, para. 1). The collaboration between the two organizations led to a 2-year initiative and the establishment of a committee responsible for drafting an action-oriented blueprint for the future of the nursing practice at both local and national levels. Its key messages associated with the improvement of the nursing practice led to the development of several recommendations, which were as follows:

  • Removing barriers associated with the scope of the nursing practice;
  • Expanding nurses’ opportunities to enable leadership and the diffusion of collaborative efforts;
  • Implementing nursing residency programs;
  • Contributing to the increase in nurses with baccalaureate degrees to reach 80% by 2020;
  • Doubling the number of nurses holding doctorate degrees by 2020;
  • Making sure that nurses engage in continuous lifelong learning;
  • Preparing and enabling nurses to implement change and advance their practice;
  • Designing a reliable infrastructure for an effective collection and analysis of relevant nursing data (IOM, 2011).

Overall, the “Future of Nursing” report holds special importance to nursing practice, education, and workforce development because it was dedicated to finding the most effective solutions to offering patients the highest quality of care that they require. The report suggested that real change was possible not only through the support of nurses but also through the assistance of local, state, and federal governments, businesses, professional organizations, healthcare institutions, and insurance companies. Therefore, the idea of collaboration and mutual effort was especially high on the agenda in the “Future of Nursing” report.

Importance of State-Based Action Coalitions

State-based action coalitions are important contributors to improving the quality of care and helping nurses enhance their practice because they carry out the work at the local state, and regional levels (Campaign for Action, n.d). Also, such coalitions engage various stakeholders such as businesses, educational institutions, and other relevant organizations to build stronger communities. Thus, the goals of state-based action coalitions align with the objectives and procedures outlined in the “Future of Nursing” report. This points to the fact that efforts that separate state coalitions implement through their initiatives could contribute to the overall positive change in the nursing practice and help the healthcare industry as a whole.

Florida Action Coalition

In the state of Florida, the Florida Action Coalition (formed in 2011) works to “provide leadership in advancing the nursing profession so that Floridians can access safe, high-quality health care” (Campaign for Action, n.d.). The organization’s vision is allowing all citizens to have access to safe, high-quality, and patient-centered care. Thus, the initiatives in which the Florida Action Coalition participates are all associated with meeting the vision of the organization. The first example is the Diversity Think Tank initiative, which had the goal of ensuring a diverse pool of nursing students that enter, study, and graduate from educational facilities in Florida. To reach the goal, the Coalition worked on developing resources and opportunities to secure their leadership positions (Florida Action Coalition, 2014). The key barrier to the initiative’s success was the lack of support from the local government to allow diverse populations to expand their access to nursing education.

The second example of an initiative introduced by the Florida Action Coalition was the Board Service Initiative. The Initiative implied the selection of thirty participants from across Florida to form the first comprehensive board service training program (Florida Action Coalition, 2016). Importantly, the program was funded by the Florida Blue Foundation and supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as a direct response to the IOM report. Creating a nurse board allowed the Coalition to enhance the process of sharing knowledge, information, expertise, compassion, and skills between professional nurses to benefit the environment of health policy development. Overall, the Board Service Initiative could contribute to educating the nursing workforce to help professionals lead the movement of nursing practice change in Florida. The largest barrier that the initiative had to overcome was associated with choosing only thirty board participants because the number of skilled professionals in Florida was very high.

References

Campaign for Action. (n.d.). State action coalitions. Web.

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Florida Action Coalition. (2014). A diversity think tank. Web.

Florida Action Coalition. (2016). March 2016 newsletter. Web.

IOM. (2011). The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. Web.

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