In the United States of America, the role of the nurses is often limited in spite the fact their training is quite broad and provides them with the skills they require the challenges that they encounter in their day to day practice. In the primary care set up, this has proven to be an impediment to the delivery of health care services given that doctors are often overwhelmed by the demanding needs of the patients. It is against this background that it is important for all nurses who are registered should be allowed to practice to the full extent of the knowledge and the skills that they have acquired as a result of their training.
In the primary care setting, nurses can deal be assigned the less complex cases in order to deal with the shortages and delays that are currently being experienced. This would enable the physicians to focus on the more complex cases and therefore ensure that delivery of health care services is more efficient and timely. According to a report that was written by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development health, nations in both the developing and developed world are seeking ways to improve the delivery of health care services. One of the ways in which this can be attained is through the expansion of the role that is played by the nurses in the primary care set up.
There is quite an overwhelming body evidence that shows that receiving care from a nurse or from a physician has the same effect on the outcome of the patient. During a two year follow up of406 patients which involved comparing the outcome of the patient when treatment was administered by a nurse or by a physician, it was concluded that nurses were just as competent as physicians. The patients were divided into two groups; those who were being treated by a physician and those who received care from a nurse. There were no differences between the health status, satisfaction in care given by the specialists and indicators of disease. A randomized clinical trial that was published in the Journal of American Medical Association also drew the same conclusion. In spite the availability of such evidence, there are still strict regulations in most states in USA that restrict nurses from practicing in the same capacity as physicians. For instance, in Arizona, a nurse can only give a prescription in the presence of a nurse.
Importance of participation in a professional organization
A professional organization such as the American Nursing Organization can be beneficial for a nurse who is seeking to effect positive change. This is because it provides an opportunity to broaden one’s professional network. During the annual meetings and conventions, ideas and suggestions on how to improve the practice of nursing can be discussed at length against the background of existing legal frameworks and professional guidelines. Such discussions can ultimately lead to further research on a given aspect of nursing practice and ultimately a shift in that aspect of nursing.
A professional network also accords one the opportunity to gain access to educational seminars and workshops. Through such seminars, a nurse can acquire the skills and the knowledge that is necessary for the improvement of their daily nursing practice. The nurse also gets an opportunity to present and discuss their ideas with other likeminded individuals; a step that is necessary in order to refine the ideas. A professional network also provides the nurse with the opportunity to advance their studies through sponsored master’s and doctoral research studies.
A professional nursing association provides a wealth of information on the current trends in nursing, the legislative framework and the future of nursing practice. Members of a professional nursing network can also get information on the advances that have been in technology and new discoveries. The nurse can therefore be well equipped once the changes are implemented as a result of being a part of a professional nursing network. In conclusion, it is beneficial to be a part of a professional nursing association.
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