There has been a growing need to improve the quality of healthcare services across the globe. Many policies have been formulated based on the challenges that are encountered in the process of service delivery in the healthcare sector. Studies conducted on the healthcare sector indicate that the quality of care that is offered to patients is poor and therefore emphasis has been placed on formulating and initiating policies that can significantly improve the quality of healthcare service (Hoff & Prout, 2019). Nurses’ associations from different parts of the world have been advocating for the implementation and initiation of policies that improve the quality of care.
Description of Policy Challenge
Quality of care is a policy in the health sector defined as the level to which the target group increases the possibility of a preferred health outcome. The goal of quality health care is to attain universal health coverage. Quality health care is characterized by effectiveness, safety, and patient-centered (Pushkin, 2018). To achieve the benefits of this policy in nursing practice, the health services should be timely by reducing waiting periods hence curbing risky delays. Quality care should be standardized such that equitability is evidenced in gender, ethnicity, socio-economic status, and geographical location, which ensures benefits are optimal. A prime example of this policy is the American Nurses Association (ANA).
Agenda for Quality of Care
Quality of care policy involves evaluating and refining quality by first outlining what should entail and what should not. The definition of quality of care provides an overview of the dimensions that are considered crucial for a satisfactory service in health care. The core dimensions that are universally recognized as crucial to quality of care include effectiveness, patient safety, and patient-centeredness. In effectiveness, this policy advocates for thorough service delivery which is evidence-based (Pushkin, 2018). Safety for patients is key in eliminating harm to target groups while patient-centeredness involves considering peoples’ needs and preferences.
Quality of Care Policy Identification
Healthcare is a basic human right, its quality is of importance for it to be satisfiable and effective. It is therefore notable that the healthcare industry invests a significant portion of its resources in improving the quality of care. For instance, the American Nurses Association believes that every person without exception of nurses, deserves optimal quality care (Brinderjeet, 2020). Quality of care policy is hence advocated for by healthcare organizations across the world. For the ANA, quality of care became a policy issue that needed attention considering the association’s core values and principles. Professionalism and patient-centeredness play an important role in identifying this policy.
Literature Review in Policy Identification
To identify this policy, a literature review is required for the purpose of a candid formulation. The literature review provides information on identifying loopholes in health care provision that challenge the quality of services offered by the organization (Grundy et al., 2022). Additionally, a literature review ensures that proficient standards are met in formulating quality of care policy for any organization. A prime example is a literature review conducted by ANA in the healthcare industry in the USA to identify the need for advocating for quality of care policy in nursing practice. The American Nurses Association conducted a review of documented materials and made observations on the level of satisfaction for stakeholders in the US and suggested the need for formulating this policy.
Environmental Scan in Policy Identification
Environmental scanning is a tool that is used to advise on decision-making, planning, and development of programs in the healthcare industry. The environmental scan involves seeking more information and using the available information from external and internal environments in developing a plan to improve the performance of an organization. The American Nurses Association used this tool in formulating the policy plan for quality healthcare in the US (Moriates & Arora, 2018). The existing information about the status of health care was used. Additionally, the ANA searched for more information in order to develop an informed policy on quality of care in nursing practice.
SWOT Analysis in Policy Identification
SWOT analysis is a technique used to identify the organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats in a competitive environment. In healthcare, SWOT analysis provides a synopsis of the service delivery and general success of the healthcare sector. In order to formulate an effective policy of quality care, the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the healthcare sector need to be considered (Prasad, 2022). The ANA did an analysis of SWOT in the healthcare sector in the US which enabled the association to suggest a quality of care policy in nursing practice. The overall performance of the health sector is key in doing this analysis.
Key Stakeholders in Quality Care Policy
The key stakeholders for this policy challenge include but are not limited to the nurses, patients, the government, and medical institutions. In addition to that, biotechnology, the research community, and the media play crucial roles in the efficiency of quality care policy in the nursing practice. The above-mentioned interest groups play their respective roles in ensuring the formulation and implementation of the policy (Pushkin, 2018). For instance, the research community and the audit team may help in scrutinizing the healthcare sector and identifying any flaws, a practice that eventually leads the healthcare sector to improve the quality of care in the nursing practice.
Strategies to Lobby Legislators
In order to lobby the legislators for this policy, the Association needs to employ different strategies to ensure implementation. Constant reminders through emails to the nursing staff can assist in the effective implementation of quality care policy (Prasad, 2022). Conducting meetings for the legislators may help lobby them for quick action to the policy. Internal audit is yet another strategy that can be used in implementing this policy. Another strategy is to conduct testimonies for the patients’ and nurses’ experiences of the services offered by the healthcare organization. The feedback collected from these testimonies is useful in lobbying the legislators.
Non-legislative Strategies Supporting the Initiative
The Cost-benefit analysis is one of the non-legislative strategies that can be used to support this initiative. By analyzing the cost that is to be incurred and the anticipated benefits of this initiative, the organization can draw a sufficient budget for the same. Another non-legislative strategy is by conducting public campaigns advocating for this initiative. The organization may as well use the media as an agent for communicating this initiative to the general public (Nair & Thomas, 2020). Last but not least non-legislative strategy is through external audit where the quality of care in nursing practice is assessed to affirm that the initiative is underway.
Legislative Process the Policy Challenge
The quality of care policy challenge in the nursing practice is underway in the legislative process. According to reports published by ANA, it is evident that the quality of care in the nursing practice has significantly improved. There is reported positive feedback from the patient experiences and the nurses are as well reportedly motivated. It is notable that patients receive both standardized and customized services in order to ensure maximum satisfaction (Moriates & Arora, 2018). The work environment for the nurses is reported to be favorably fit for them hence providing an opportunity for the legislators to succeed in initiating this policy challenge.
Quality of care policy in nursing has several implications for the future. One of the implications is that there is a possibility of increased patient safety implying that patients will have increased trust for the organization. There is an anticipated enhanced efficiency and effectiveness in the healthcare sector (Hoff & Prout, 2019). Improving the quality of care in the nursing practice has the future benefit of reduced cost of health care services. Another future implication is that there is a possibility of a standardized process which eventually leads to expected outcomes ensuring equitability. Improved quality of care leads to achieving universal health coverage.
Overall enhancement of the quality of services offered in health care centers may help the providers with consistent, cost-effective processes. Initiating these quality care policies helps the organization to be proactive as they anticipate and provide remedies to problems that may occur in the future (Grundy et al., 2022). Improved efficiency is another future implication of high-quality care as this policy eliminates unnecessary activities associated with faulty medical equipment hence saving on waiting time for patients. Improved medical equipment ensures that patients are not exposed to chronic illnesses due to delayed diagnosis. For instance, cancer may be prevented by early diagnosis due to improved equipment of work.
Enhanced quality care ensures that patients are offered the services to their expectations without delay which may be harmful. Additionally, quality care policy in nursing practice has another future implication in that equitability is achieved, in that, there is no discrimination based on gender, socio-economic status, geographical location, and ethnicity (Brinderjeet, 2020). Improved quality of care is an implication that overcrowding in health care centers will reduce since patients are expected to be served fast. However, there is a negative implication that the health care organization may incur higher expenditure in its endeavor to improve the quality of care in the nursing practice.
As has been discussed in this paper, quality care policy in nursing practice is an important aspect of the healthcare sector. Quality of care as defined earlier entails the degree to which the target group increases the possibility of preferred health outcomes in the health sector. American Nurses Association is reported to have formulated this policy and succeeded in implementing it in the United States. The core dimensions universally accepted as crucial to quality of care include effectiveness, patient safety, and patient-centeredness. As mentioned in the previous slides, the quality of care policy can be identified through a literature review, SWOT analysis, and environmental scan.
The key stakeholders in the quality of care include nurses, patients, government, and medical institutions. Additionally, the research community, the media, and biotechnology are key in formulating and implementing this policy. The strategies to lobby legislators for this policy are email reminders, internal and external audits, public campaigns, cost-benefit analyses, using the media as an agent, etc. Quality of care policy in nursing practice has several future implications which include but are not limited to increased patient safety, increased effectiveness and efficiency in the healthcare sector, equitability, and reduced overcrowding among others. Quality of care policy is a constant process that needs to be evaluated constantly.
Brinderjeet, K. (2020). Interpersonal communications in nursing practice – Key to Quality Health care. Archives of Nursing Practice and Care, 019-022. Web.
Grundy, Q., Huyer, L., Parker, L., & Bero, L. (2022). Branded care: The policy implications of pharmaceutical industry-funded nursing care related to specialty medicines. Policy, Politics, &Amp; Nursing Practice, 123(7), 152715442211217. Web.