1. How can average nurses be involved in the political process?
Nursing is a profession that should involve many policy makers. The policy makers should not come from any other profession but nursing. Nurses have a lot of issues that they would like to address but fail to do so due to lack of a forum (Barbara Cherry, 2013).
2. What do you do or should do in order to become more politically active?
There are different ways that the average nurses can involve themselves in the political process. First, nurses need to learn a lot about issues and politics on local, state or national level. This process of learning can be conducted successfully through visiting their professional nursing organizations websites such as www.nursingworld.com, attending political workshops, local programs and lobby days. This process will help them learn more things, comment on others and ask for clarifications where ambiguity arises. Studies have proven that this involvement in various political programs helps nurses in airing their issues. Second, nurses need to join various decision-making organizations, groups and associations that are professionally relevant to nursing. Joining these groups helps them give their views and suggestions on particular issues. These matters can then be forwarded by their association or group leaders to the appropriate authorities.
The authorities will now be able to act on them. Third, they are required to visit, sending e-mails, writing letters, visiting legislators or making calls to the relevant authorities or persons. Additionally, studies have revealed that those political leaders love hearing from their constituents. Furthermore, they need to stay tuned and understand more the issues affecting the healthcare industry. The keenness exhibited can enable them identify possible gaps within the sector that they are supposed to fill. Nurses also need to be patriotic enough by voting and influencing others to vote. With this act, they will choose wisely and therefore reducing laxity in meeting their professional needs (Huber, 2013).
1. What does it mean to be a change agent?
A change agent is anyone within or outside the profession, organization or any setting who aids in the revolution of an occupation or organization. This transformation can be through concentrating on various matters such as the development, effectiveness or improvement of the profession or organization. Therefore, being a change agent needs application of the above said. Understanding what it means by being a change agent needs a good grasp of change models. These models are Lewin's Change Management Model, Kotter's 8-Step Change Model, ADKAR Change Management Model and many others (Michele Sare, 2010).
2. Give two examples of when you were a change agent or witnessed another nurse as a change agent. What happened and how did the change occur?
I have been able to witness nurses be change agents in two occasions. First, Ryan Fuller, a member of Association of California Nurse Leaders (ACNL), has been championing for all nurse leaders from novice to be involved in the process of lifelong learning. He has been encouraging the leaders to accomplish this through being active members of ACNL. He says that he took nursing as his second career, something associated with many young people. He did this act when in college. He joined the association, and now he is helping every young nurse leader to join and make a difference. It has proven to bear fruits (Michele Sare, 2010).
The second story is that of Laurie Bickhoff, who has a Bachelor of Nursing degree from the University of Newcastle NSW. She became a change agent by encouraging a lot of people to join the nursing profession and also supporting the current nurses and students to remain in the health care profession. She also has tutoring sessions for nursing students. This act has completely revolutionized the nursing profession in Australia.
Barbara Cherry, S. R. (2013). Contemporary Nursing,Issues, Trends, & Management,6: Contemporary Nursing. Kansas City: Elsevier Health Sciences.
Huber, D. (2013). Leadership and Nursing Care Management. Kansas City: Elsevier Health Sciences.
Michele Sare, L. O. (2010). Strategic Planning for Nurses: Change Management in Health Care. Sudbury: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.