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Political Action Awareness In Nursing Essay

556 words - 3 pages

Political Action Awareness in Nursing

Soul Mckenna

NUR/587

September 14, 2010

Political Action Awareness in Nursing

Nursing professionals have many industry organizations to choose from that can help the nurse stay aware of political actions related to nursing. Nursing organizations can be general or specialized, but with both, members will support a stated mission. The professional organizations have large memberships and will maintain state and national links to monitor ongoing political developments. This paper will review how nurse leaders from across the nation use the American Nurses Association (ANA) to stay current on relevant political actions and why it is so important.
The Professional Organization for Political Awareness
The ANA is the only complete professional organization representing more than three million registered nurses across the ...view middle of the document...

On a more local level nurse leaders can also take advantage of local ANA meetings.
Importance of Maintaining Political Awareness
Staying current with health care related policy is essential in protecting not only nursing practice and its scope but also the environment in which nurses work (ANA 2010 Annual Report, 2011). Protecting these issues creates better nurses and put patients in the safest environments. The ANA keeps nurse leaders informed of such legislative topics as, the nursing shortage, appropriate staffing, health/safety in the workplace, patient safety, and patient advocacy (ANA, 2011).
As a nurse leader staying current can increase patient and staff safety. One legislative priority the ANA has a position on is in the use of mandatory overtime. The ANA opposes this position and the background evidence shows that mandatory overtime can cause serious safety issues for patients (Bae, 2010). As a professional organization of nurses, the ANA has the best ability to direct and influence legislative policy on health care issues.
Conclusion
The current nursing policy actions can have a direct connection between patients and what nurses can do for them. What would happen to these policies if organizations like the ANA did not care to lobby for them, and would they even exist? Health care policies and laws can influence not just the work environment but the environment of the patient and safety must be the priority at the top of the list. In order for nurse leaders to have a say in what happens from a legislative point of view it becomes necessary to gain a professional organizational relationship, one like the ANA, so that one voice may turn into many.

References
American Nurses Association. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.nursingworld.org.
American Nurses Association 2010 Annual Report. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.nursingworld.org/FunctionalMenuCategories/AboutANA/2010-ANA-Annual-Report-.aspx
Bae, S. (2010). Mandatory overtime regulations and nurse overtime. Policy, politics, & Nursing Practice, 11(2), 99-107.

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