Evolving Nursing Practice and Patient Care Delivery Models

Evolving Nursing Practice and Patient Care Delivery Models

In the contemporary medical world, change is inevitable and the only constant factor. Given the indispensability of this fact, the role played by the nurses in the healthcare industry will change with time. In essence, this paper focuses on determining the new roles that nurses will play in evolving healthcare delivery models. Of the essence to the achievement of this goal is an informal presentation, which seeks to educate nurses about their roles in the evolving nursing practice.

Expectation of Nursing Practice Growth and Change

Given the expected changes in the medical world, nurses need to prepare themselves adequately for embracement of their new expanded roles associated with their profession. That is for sure given the presence of several reasons that point to the need for this change. A case in point is the future expectation of increased number of patients seeking medical interventions given the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provision of maximizing healthcare insurance coverage. Primarily, a provision of this kind necessitates recruitment of more nurses for the attendance to needs of the high number of patients. According to Hussung, (2016), such an aspiration is not practical given the current problem of nursing shortage.

Notwithstanding, new medical technologies will also contribute to the expansion and change in nursing practice. Such is the case given that nurses will have to formulate adaptive strategies that will enable them to cope with the technological change. A case in point of technological advancement that will cause such an effect is telemedicine. Telemedicine has the capacity of improving the quality of care provided to individuals residing in rural or underserved areas continent. With such technology, nursing specialists will have an easy time in directing the primary healthcare providers in remote areas on how to handle complicated healthcare issues without necessarily being physically present (Hussung, 2016). Based on this illustration, it is beyond doubt that the nursing practice will change.

Continuity of Care

With the imminent changes, it is also vital to determine how nursing in the evolved healthcare industry will ensure continuity of care. Primarily, the concept of the continuum of care in the emerging nursing practice is not in jeopardy. Such is the case because of the creation of new nursing roles that will ensure the continuity of care. A befitting example of such a role is the attending registered nurse (ARNs) role. Through this role, the nurse assumes the responsibility of a patient throughout the hospital stay and after discharge to enhance continuity of care (Naylor, Aiken, Kurtzman, Olds, & Hirschman, 2011). Such a nursing role will thus ensure the maintenance of the continuum of care.

Emerging Health Care Delivery Models

The emerging health care delivery models of interest include Accountable Care Organization (ACO), medical or health homes and nursing-managed health clinics. Primarily, the ACO model of health care delivery unites primary care clinician, a hospital and other specialists that share the same vision of this team. The primary motivating factor this organization is to obtain a Medicare benefit following achievement of a preset level of quality. Within this mode, nurses have two main opportunities. Firstly, it opens the door for collaboration with primary care nurses for the provision of a coordinated care plan for the sick persons. Secondly, nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists become empowered to provide central organizational leadership in the confines of this model especially in rural areas (Haney, 2010).

Within the medical/health homes delivery model, opportunities for nurses also abound. For instance, Haney, (2010) is of the idea that nurses-led medical homes perform better as compared to the ones led by other health care professionals. As such, in this model, nurses should have a leadership role in the medical homes. Other than leading, nurses have the opportunities of coordinating care within the medical homes and taking charge of patient teaching within this care delivery model.

Lastly, the nursing-managed health clinics (NMHCs) will also provide nurses certain opportunities that are worth noting. Such opportunities include offering primary care and wellness services to the underserved and most vulnerable population, management of chronic diseases, coordination, and integration of care (Haney, 2010). With such opportunities, it is beyond doubt that the nursing practice expansion in the NMHCs is inevitable.


Concisely, this paper aimed at determining the new roles that nurses will play in evolving healthcare delivery models. Indeed, from the discussion, it is clear that opportunities for nursing practice abound. As such, nurses ought to be ready for the same if they are to remain productive in the future. In the absence of such preparation, nurses’ competencies will become obsolete.




Haney, C. (2010). New Care Delivery Models in Health System Reform: Opportunities for Nurses & their Patients.nursingworld.org. Retrieved 14 July 2017, from http://nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/Policy-Advocacy/Positions-and-Resolutions/Issue-Briefs/Care-Delivery-Models.pdf.

Hussung, T. (2016).The Future of Nursing: How Changes in the Healthcare Industry Affect Clinical Practice – Husson University. Husson University. Retrieved 14 July 2017, from http://online.husson.edu/the-future-of-nursing/

Naylor, M. D., Aiken, L. H., Kurtzman, E. T., Olds, D. M., & Hirschman, K. B. (2011).The importance of transitional care in achieving health reform. Health affairs30(4), 746-754.