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Mandated Nurse-Patient Ratio Legislation

Mandating Nurse-Patient Ratios

  • Healthcare is an essential resource that the state and the government need to provide to its citizens. This is because a healthy society is capable of achieving its needs, goals, and objectives in the short run and in the long run at ease (Wolfson, 2009). However, when the health of individuals within a society is at stake, the growth and development projects that have been put in place shall not be conducted effectively and efficiently.
  • Based upon this realization, several states within the United States of America have come up with policies that aim at improving the provision of healthcare within their boundaries (Wolfson, 2009). Improvement of nurse-patient ratios has been one of the strategies that have been widely used since the beginning of the 21s century.
  • According to Aiken et al (2010), California was the only state that had implemented this legislation by the year 2004. In 2006, the effects of this legislation could be felt as early as in 2006.
  • From the results that were conducted in this study, it was evident that after adopting the new nurse-patient legislation, provision of healthcare within the state of California had improved as compared to other states in the country (Aiken et al, 2010).
  • First, the number of patients per nurse had reduced. California reported benchmarks that were compliant to the required staffing levels as compared to the other states. From this, it is evident that the nurses within this state were assigned workloads that they could handle (Aiken et al, 2010).
  • Secondly, it was identified that this new strategy improved the level of monitoring that was offered to patients with ADLs (Aiken et al, 2010). From the results that were collected from the study, it was identified that nurses paid more attention to patients who required special care.
  • Thirdly, as a result of the reduced workloads, nurses had the opportunity to give better evaluations to their patients (Wolfson, 2009). This has greatly improved the level of healthcare that the state of California is offering to its community.
  • The overall effect of that California has achieved after the enactment of this legislation include improved healthcare services, reduced workloads for nurses, provision of a conducive working environment for registered nurses and other healthcare providers and increased rate of nurse retention. This greatly improves the quality of care offered to the public and reduces the mortality rates (Wolfson, 2009).
  • From the successes that have been mentioned above, I feel that it would be wise to adopt and implement this strategy to improve the quality of healthcare in our state.

My Strategy to Influence Votes

The healthcare industry needs to be reformed to meet up to the quality and standards of the modern world (Wolfson, 2009). However, for the necessary changes to be effected, nurses and other practitioners within the healthcare industry need to develop and implement legislations, policies, and laws that are required to effect these changes. However, most of the personnel in this industry lack the political and legislative qualities and skills to advocate and implement these changes. To gather the votes that are required to pass the new health legislations into law, I will use a mix of strategies.

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Nurses are experts in the field of medicine. Therefore, using their expertise as a strategy, nurses can be able to get recognition in the political and legislative arena by being involved in matters relating to health issues (Abood, 2007). At a local level, nurses can offer their expertise and opinions on ways that can be used to improve the health system of their respective communities. In addition to this, the referent power that nurses have from other individuals within the society can also be used to include many other people in the struggle of improving the healthcare system. Thus, with careful planning and execution, nurses can play a critical role in spearheading and influencing the policies and legislations that are made in the healthcare industry to improve it for the better.

At the state level, I would utilize the advantage that nurses have in terms of their numbers. In the United States alone, there are over 2.9 million registered nurses (Abood, 2007). This makes nurses to be the largest group of personnel within the healthcare industry in the nation. If utilized wisely, the sheer numbers of nurses in the country can be used as a cohesive and powerful force to overcome the dissatisfaction, conflicts, and failures that nurses have been experiencing for decades now (Abood, 2007). Instead, this number can be used to fight for the rights and privileges of nurses that can be used to develop and implement legislations and policies in the political arena.

Increase My Power to Influence Votes

To gather necessary votes that are required to bring changes in the healthcare industry, I will need to improve my popularity and image. To achieve this, I will become a member of several health and aid organizations within the nation. Teaming up with influential people in the society will also be an effective strategy (Polit, 1998). Desirable individuals to team up with include politicians, celebrities, and businessmen. Finally, I will try to gain public support. To achieve this, I will organize rallies, workshops and campaigns all advocated to improve healthcare. The use of social media and other electronic forms of networking will boost this process. All this strategies will increase the power and influence that I have within the society hence increasing the number of votes that I will get.

References

Abood, S. (2007). Influencing Health Care in the Legislative Arena. Web.

Aiken, H., Douglas, M., Sloane, J.P., Cimiotti, S.P., Clarke, L.F., Jean, A.S., Joanne S. and Herbert, L.S. (2010). Implication of California Nurse Staffing Mandate on other States. Web.

Polit, D.F. (1998). Nursing Research: Principles and Methods. Philadelphia: JB Lippincott Company.

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Wolfson, A. (2009). Harwood-Nuss’ clinical practice of emergency medicine. New York: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

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