Expected Change and Growth in Nursing
Integration of technology into the healthcare system in the United States has led to the evolvement of the health care system. The changes are expected to grow even to higher levels in the coming days. The evolvement goes hand in hand with the change of the population patterns hence their health requirements. According to the Centre for Disease Prevention and Control(CDC) in 2014, a higher percentage of the United States population is aging.
The increase is as a result of improved medical care services through technology increasing the life expectancy of people. The evolving healthcare services include focusing on primary health care, frequent screening and early detection and treatment of conditions that otherwise may be chronic and bring complications(Edelman, Mandle, & Kudzma, 2017). With maximization of preventive health care, adoption of telehealth services and evidence-based healthcare services, healthcare services will majorly be community-based. Fewer services will be available in the hospitals and related facilities only for the acute care. This article focuses on the change of the nursing jobs from a hospital setting to the community, based on the ongoing restructuring of the healthcare sector in the United States.
How the practice of nursing is expected to grow and change.
According to statistics from Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 2.5 million workers practicing in the healthcare sector are nurses. Even with that, still, there is a shortage of nurses comparing to the highly growing population in need of nursing services. This indicated that for any change in the healthcare sector to be effective must majorly affect the nursing services.
Change in the cost of the health care services, quality of care concerns and type of health care conditions are among the factors that facilitate urgency for change in the healthcare sector. Nursing as a critical field in the health sector is expected to experience significant changes and growth. Among them will include specialization of nursing services to ensure delivery of focused and high-quality services. Nursing services will be based on approved practices through research which is commonly referred to as evidence-based practices(Wager, Lee & Glaser, 2017). Specialization will ensure highly skilled, knowledgeable and educated care providers. Currently, nurses area of specialization are diverse to an extent nurses practitioner can be able to provide comprehensive multidisciplinary care to the patients. This means with specialty, there will be multidisciplinary care to the patients ensuring continuity of comprehensive care. Among the many specialized nurse practitioners will be: nurse anesthetist, nurse researcher, psychiatry nurse, pediatric nurse, orthopedic nurse, palliative care nurse, obstetric and gynecologist nurse and many more.
The technology is bettering the diagnosis and treatment of conditions, storage and transformation of data, communication within the health care providers and the patients, raising the standards of quality of life. Nursing jobs stand a better chance to be influenced by future technological advances in the medical field. Some of the technological operations in the medical area include Electronic Health Records and Telemedicine. The two applications bypass one on one interaction between health caregiver and the receiver. By this, traffic of patients in the healthcare facilities is reduced, and a caregiver can use server relatively high number of patients per allocated time. There is a need for the nurses to be on the frontline in the adoption and implementation of the new system. Nurse Managers in the medical homes and nurse-managed health clinics ought to be involved in the transformation by an installation of such services in their facilities.
With an increase in the number of aged population, most of the health care services are likely to be home-based. Most elderly people prefer to be treated at their home, which is one of the home based palliative care that is now advocated for the elderly. Research findings indicate that many aged people in the United States receive the end of life care and die in healthcare facilities against their will. The symptoms and pain can be better managed and treated in the comfort of their homes in the surrounding of family members. Caring for the old at home being one of the focuses of the United States health system revolution, Accountable Care Organizations of caregivers can take up the matter (Patel, 2015). The organizations, made up a multidisciplinary team led by nurses are to educate the public on the significance of caring for the old according to their wishes. Additionally, the organizations will encourage the aged make their end of life care decisions known to the responsible members in advance.
There is a need for the health care system to focus primary health care through advocating for healthy living practices among the population. A healthy diet and avoiding sedentary lifestyle will hinder them from contracting lifestyle-based conditions. Chronic conditions caused by unhealthy lifestyles are reported to be the most burden to the healthcare sector in the United States. Of the total population suffering from illnesses, 35% is suffering from at least one chronic condition. Chronic conditions are better prevented than treated. The conditions better managed by advocating for healthy living amongst people. This means health care services will be more community based than in the healthcare facilities. Public health nursing has a large part to play when it comes to community services. Those people already suffering from these chronic conditions can be helped to manage their symptoms and complications at home unless it is unavoidable to visit a hospital.
Feedback shared by three nurse colleagues.
All the nurses approved that the health care system is in the process of restructuring primarily to raise the standards of care delivered. Changes have been experienced in the health care system before and nursing sector as the backbone, has always played a part in the changes. There is every need for the practitioners in the nursing field to be updated and be equipped with knowledge and necessary skills in the current technological advancements. This should extend to the community service where the services will be majorly based on (Reckrey, 2015). Therefore, it is advised for the practicing and training nurse to be aware of what is expected of them as far as nursing skills are concerned to the targeted goal of health care.
The new role of the nurse would be to advocate for health and preventive measures in communities and offering emergency and acute care in healthcare facilities. Shift of the United States health care system from health care centers to reaching out individuals and families in the community requires a nurse to be well informed on preventive measures and strategies that promote health. This will include advocating for healthy foods consumption and engagement in physical activities and exercises. On top of supporting these healthy practices, there is need to make the public understand the link between this practices and healthy living. Among the aged population, the exercises not only prevent and manage medical conditions but also delays degeneration of body systems.
Advancements in the medical field through technology will bridge the gap created by the high percentage of the population in need of nursing services and the low number of practicing nurses. Telemedicine and electronic healthcare records will enable the nurse to serve the number of patients in the facilities per given time more effectively and efficiently. in the process of ensuring quality care, the crisis of nursing shortages would have been solved too. Reports from researchers and nursing services offered in the communities will be transferred electronically (Coiera, 2015). Therefore, there is need for the new technological advancements to be included in the nursing curriculum for the training nurses to be familiar with the system in time. Specialization of care will ensure more efficient and comprehensive attention is given to health care receivers.
The new changes and restructuring need support and goodwill from all the stakeholders, primarily nursing practitioners, without fighting for it to be fruitful. Nursing care will not be limited to healthcare facilities again. Hence practicing nurses will have significant opportunity to learn and apply their skills in the community. Changing concentration from treating to preventing and maintaining health will trace nursing as a field to its roots while ensuring continuity of care. General outcomes will be increased level of health across the nation, improved quality of care and funds used to treat otherwise; preventable conditions will be directed towards more advancements in the healthcare system.
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