Academic Master

Health Care, Nursing

Combining Nurse Leadership With Advocacy

Every nurse has the potential for leadership, but the problem is that most of them do not recognize this potential. It is important to note that every person has a set of strengths and weaknesses in regard to their knowledge and skill set. While most people have difficulties identifying these skills and knowledge sets, I am capable of identifying some of the strengths and weaknesses in regard to my skills and knowledge set. Moreover, the invention of the American Association of Critical Care Nurse Manager Skills provided an opportunity for me to clearly establish my skills and weaknesses. Therefore, this paper will analyze the results from the assessment of inventory skills. I will present the strengths and weaknesses in relation to the four areas listed in the Nurse Manager Skills Inventory: personal and professional accountability, career planning, personal journey disciplines, and reflective practice in regard to behaviors and tenants.

Personal and Professional Accountability

In the evaluation of my personal development and growth area, I realized I fell in the middle. I have some strengths and also weaknesses in educational advancement, career planning, continuing education, and certification. In life, I acknowledge the uncertainty of the future, and that’s why I furthered my education by attaining a bachelor’s degree in nursing. I also have ambitions of attaining higher levels of education, such as a doctorate degree in nursing practice. Despite my desires and plans, I am undecided about the specialty to take; thus, I am torn between choosing emergency medicine or stroke certification. This area needs further improvement for better personal as well as professional liability. My association status needs to be improved as, being a member of a nursing association in my city, I neither actively participate in the legislative procedures nor in any advocacy procedure on behalf of colleagues and patients.

Conversely, I can rate myself very highly when it comes to ethical practices and behavior. This is because I believe that evidence-based practice is important in the provision of competent and safe care to patients and their families. Therefore I desire to impact this practice to other nurses as it would produce the best universal outcome as patients will receive up-to-date practices which will eventually uphold safe practices and reduce the risk factors in the practices.

Career Planning

According to the Institute of Medicine (2010), the roles, education, and responsibilities of nurses should be significantly revolutionized in regard to the healthcare reforms taking place. The transformation will help in meeting the increasing demand for better care and the improvement of the health care system. The transformation of health care would support home care for considerably sick patients while the very sick would be cared for in the acute care unit. Therefore, my job description as a nurse and the professional requirements will have to change according to the advancement in the health care system. Thus, furthering my education would make me an asset to the healthcare system as I will be able to adjust well to the changes. I would also be in a good position to mentor young nurses by using evidence-based practice models to further the goal of providing safe, skilled, quality, and cost-effective care.

Personal Journey Disciplines

I have a greater growth opportunity in this section. I currently practice reflective practice and action learning, but I am not very confident in this area. For better learning and care of patients, my participation skills need to be increased both as a learner and a mentor. In my ADN program, I had poor learning techniques, which mostly involved memorization. Thus, appropriate learning techniques are important in active learning and reflective practice as they enhance the critical thinking skills of a practitioner. I lack shared leadership and council management skills, and I can say I rate myself as a novice in this area. Green and Jordan (2004) stated that an empowered nurse will enhance their work environment and improve the quality of care delivery. Therefore, I need to build my skills and knowledge in this area so as to increase my capability of enhancing the environment and care delivery. I will do this by using my voice to air my opinions and concerns in relation to the nursing profession.

Reflective Practice Reference Behaviors

Generally, I feel I should rate myself as over-competent. I believe I am accepting and tolerant of the diverse practices and beliefs in society. I strive to incorporate these beliefs, whether cultural or religious beliefs, into the care of the patients. I practice holistic care, where I incorporate safe beliefs in care, shun harmful beliefs, and, at the same time, create awareness of safe practices. This can be challenging, but the active and reflective techniques will be helpful in the enhancement of the personal and professional technique of dealing with diversity in belief. Therefore, I believe that this practice needs commitment, which I have proven to have by caring for my invalid mother, working full-time, and at the same time participating in the nursing program. Moreover, I strive to get answers to different circumstances I encounter during practice through continuous learning and research.

Implementation Plan

Family care international (2008), asserts that advocacy is the practice of building a support system for a cause or an issue and at the same time influencing other people to take action. Nurses have a responsibility to advocate for their patients, their families, the communities they live in, and most importantly, themselves. Taking part in advocacy will help bring realistic changes that are capable of meeting the patients’ and staff’s needs (Tomajan, 2012). Advocacy is the identification of issues and trying to improve or find solutions to them. I have noticed that nurses make up the largest percentage of the healthcare facilities’ workforce. I have also noticed that the current nurses present in my place of work are coming of age, and new, experienced nurses are needed to offer services to patients.

Therefore, I would continue to develop and grow my skills and pass them on to the younger, inexperienced nurses. My current role as a nursing manager at the acute care unit is a big opportunity to grow and pass my skills to others. I plan to become an active nursing educator in regard to the existing nursing practices and changes in nursing practice. I also desire to advocate for the implementation and support of the team atmosphere for all members who provide care in a hospital setting. I desire the information and input I will provide to be appreciated, and I strive to further my education and ensure that I grow in all these healthcare system areas. Despite my desire to develop and grow myself and others, I also need support from colleagues, other care providers, and employers. I would need support through the provision of opportunities for growth through the provision of higher positions and opportunities to undertake research. There is legislation that wants full-time workers in America to work 40 hours and receive fewer benefits than those who work 36 hours. Therefore, I also plan to participate in legislation to advocate for the nurses to have continued benefits with no changes in the work schedule and timing.

References

American Association of Critical-Care Nurses. (2006). Nurse Manager Skills Inventory. Retrieved from http://www.aone.org/resources/nurse-manager-skills-inventory.pdf

Family Care Institute, (2008). An Advocacy Toolkit for Programme Managers. Retrieved from Family Care Institute: www.familycareintl.org/en/resources/publications/66

Green, A. & Jordan, C. (2004). Common Denominators: Shared Governance and Workplace Advocacy Strategies for Nurses to Gain Control over their Practice, Online Journal of Issues in Nursing 9(1).

Institute of Medicine. (2010). The Future of Nursing Focus on Education. Retrieved from http://thefutureofnursing.org/sites/default/files/FutureofNursing2010ReportBrief.pdf

Tomajan, K. (2012). Advocacy for Nurses and Nursing. OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 17(1).

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