Trust in Nurse-Patient Relationships, Capstone Project Example
Words: 7227Capstone Project
Throughout my education, I have acquired significant knowledge and resources regarding the nursing profession that have been instrumental in shaping my growth and development in this area. I have learned that there are significant factors associated with nursing practice that require a strong educational foundation that is grounded in theoretical principles, but also require practical experience in the field in order to achieve the desired career objectives. This process is ongoing and supports the need to expand knowledge and training in a variety of areas to support nursing practice in a positive manner. I have learned that maintaining a flexible approach to nursing also conveys a sense of camaraderie and patient support that is essential to successful outcomes within the context of the profession, along with other variables that influence decision-making for all nurses.
To date, I have been exposed to a variety of areas of nursing education and critical elements of the profession that drive patient care and decision-making; therefore, I must continue to expand my knowledge and obtain the resources and training that are necessary to support patient care and wellbeing at the highest possible level. I have learned that there are many different areas of emphasis that nurses must address, including but not limited to quality of care, bedside manner, communication with nurses and patients, leadership skills, patient safety, and technology-based solutions, among other variables. I have acquired valuable skills in many of these areas and have learned that I have much more to learn throughout the nursing profession in order to expand my career path and to make a difference in the lives of my patients as I move forward in my career. I have been successful in supporting the advancement of the nursing field in many ways, but I must continue to find additional means of learning and growth in order to make a difference in the profession.
I have also learned that the concept of evidence-based practice and improving nursing activities based upon prior evidence is a critical factor in the modern healthcare setting. By learning how to identify existing evidence through research studies, it is possible to address areas of need and improvement within the practice environment that will have positive and meaningful advantages for nurses. I now recognize that evidence-based practice is challenging, yet it opens new doors for nurses to participate in process improvements and other changes that may impact policy development and improved quality of care. These factors tie in together and support an environment that will have positive and meaningful benefits for patients and improve quality of care over time.
It is important for nurses to recognize their responsibility to utilize knowledge appropriately and to optimize patient care and treatment through prior experience, evidence, and policy. Therefore, nurses must be strongly involved in the development of practice methods and approaches that will positively influence patient care and support a dynamic where knowledge and resources are optimized at all times. It is expected that by acknowledging the dynamic nature of the nursing profession, there will be an improved ability to address patient needs more closely and to be mindful of the ever-changing issues and challenges that influence patient outcomes. In this capacity, leadership plays a critical role in shaping the development of strategies to support patient health and wellbeing. This is accomplished through open communication, experience, knowledge, and an effective understanding of patient needs. There must be a greater emphasis on protecting patients from unnecessary risk or harm, while also developing process improvement strategies that will impact patient needs. These factors are instrumental in nursing education and in learning what is required to improve quality of care and treatment for all patients.
What have you learned about yourself in this program and how has it translated into your understanding of the nursing profession?
My professional aspirations have been instrumental in enabling me to focus on the needs, core values, and overall significance of the nursing profession within the healthcare industry. I have learned that many opportunities are available with this career path that will offer me many rewarding and educational experiences. I am fully engaged in expanding my skillset in nursing to embody the core values and beliefs of the nursing profession in many ways, along with understanding the needs of the practice setting as I move forward. I am committed to providing high quality care and treatment for all patients and in optimizing their safety at all times. I have acquired many skills that will continue to support my growth and knowledge base within the profession. Based upon my experiences in this program, I have become more confident, possess a higher level of knowledge of the field, and am more prepared to manage the duties that I am required to fulfill. At the same time, I also recognize that I am in continuous learning mode and have a long way to go in my professional development.
In my experiences to date, I have learned much about myself and my ability to manage the challenges and opportunities that are available. I recognize that I am fortunate to have these opportunities and am able to learn in the company of those whom I admire within the profession. I recognize that my skillset is limited at this stage; therefore, I must continue to learn from my peers and my educators in order to be successful in my professional duties and responsibilities. It has been very important to me to take each experience and learn lessons from it so that I am able to make practical and meaningful decisions throughout my career that will make a difference in the lives of my patients. These experiences will also enable me to gain greater confidence and a sense of self-worth as I move forward in my career path. I believe that it is important for nurses to be effective in all areas of the profession, but to also recognize that they are not infallible and that each stumbling block is a lesson learned. This process drives and motivates me to learn as much as possible and to improve my skillset, one step at a time.
What have your experiences to date taught you about understanding the needs of patients and what is required to advocate for their needs?
My experiences have been largely instrumental in shaping my learning environment and in supporting my growth as a professional nurse. I have been largely impacted by my exposure to a variety of issues within the healthcare profession that deeply impact patient care; therefore, I continue to strive to overcome some of these concerns with my own decision-making and support system to improve the lives of my patients. I believe that nurses must be responsible for providing support to patients in a manner that is consistent with the a caring and nurturing environment, along with an understanding of what is required to demonstrate compassion and support for these patients in their time of need. From a practical point of view, it appears that many healthcare organizations are less patient-centered than anticipated and are more focused on their bottom lines, which may create significant gaps in achieving high quality care and treatment at the desired level; therefore, it is important for organizations to identify weaknesses in this area and to better understand their responsibilities to patients in order to achieve the desired results.
The concept of patient-centered care (PCC) is one that requires continuous improvement and analysis in order to identify strengths and weaknesses from a practice-based perspective. To be specific, it is known that “although patient-centredness is … an important concept in relation to other disciplines there may be important differences in meaning … Also, the different clinical conditions under which different professionals work (e.g. length of consultation, types of problems seen) means that the results found for one professional group may not generalize to another” (Kitson, Marshall, Bassett, & Zeitz, 2013, p. 5). As a result, it may be difficult for an organization to fully develop its practice methods regarding PCC and may also conflict with nurse-centered principles. It is important to recognize these differences and to aim to overcome any obstacles in providing patient-centered care that may impede progress between nurses and patients in the development of positive and lasting interactions that will impact their health in a positive manner.
The perspective of the nursing professional may be unique and distinct from other allied health professions and that of physicians because nurses are trained to provide a different type of perspective regarding health and wellbeing due to the direct and frequent interaction with patients. This reflects a need to further examine the prospects of patient care and to recognize the benefits of a patient-centered approach that will lead to improvements in quality of life for a given patient population. A nurse’s assessment and attentiveness to patient need s is essential to the practice setting and embodies the values and beliefs of the profession. As a result, serving in the role of patient advocate is part of the nursing experience and supports an approach that will continue to emphasize quality of care and patient needs. Nurses must continue to establish their priorities in accordance with the objectives of the profession and fulfilling patient care outcomes.
My role as a nurse mirrors my core values and beliefs regarding patients and the need for high quality care and treatment at all times. I believe in supporting patients throughout their healthcare journeys, whether the conditions are minor or very serious, as all patients deserve a chance to heal under the best possible circumstances. There must be a greater emphasis on attention towards patients that will support and acknowledge their needs and wants in order to address health concerns in a direct manner. Nurse-patient communication, as noted by experts, must be clear so that patients have a better understanding of what is taking place (i.e. treatment plans) and their ability to feel a greater sense of ease with the care plan itself (Street, 2013). As a nurse, I must bridge the gaps for patients that exist between their own levels of knowledge and their understanding of their illness, and this is best accomplished through open communication and an honest approach that will ensure that my patients receive the best possible care and treatment that I am able to give. This also prepares them for what might lie ahead and facilitates a wave of acceptance that will support their response to their health status.
I am of the belief that as a nurse, it is my duty and my responsibility to act in an ethically responsible manner that is in the best interests of my patients at all times. This reflects my core values and my approach to patient care and treatment that support my career aspirations and my ability to be successful in this role. As a patient advocate, I must continue to reflect upon the opportunities that are given to me to work with patients and to make them feel at ease, in spite of the issues and fears that they face. A person-centered approach is necessary in order to determine the best possible means of addressing patient needs and expectations, while also considering the following from the nursing perspective: “Their work emphasises the value of the nurse’s relationships with the person and their family, but also the need for seeing broader influences on person-centred practice. They identify the importance of elements such as the dynamics of power and control, the effect of institutional discourse, authenticity, the care environment, appropriate skill mix, effective staff relationships and shared values within the team” (Ross, Tod, & Clarke, 2014, p. 2). This is an important point of view because a person-centered approach to patient care must facilitate a positive and meaningful patient care experience, while also considering other factors that impact the wellbeing of patients, along with their overall needs in a positive manner. Nurses must set aside any differences that they might have with their colleagues and leaders, continuing to focus on their patients above all else and in supporting their healing and quality of life. These factors demonstrate that nurses are able to overcome any distractions in the workplace and can create an environment in which they act unselfishly to improve patient outcomes and their contribution to the practice setting.
What is your perspective regarding nursing ethics, and what roles do your level of knowledge and emotional intelligence have in the nursing profession?
As a nurse, I have learned that I must be able to manage a variety of tasks and responsibilities so as not to compromise patient care. Therefore, I must remain focused and utilize my conscience and my ethical principles in making decisions in the best interests of my patients above all else. This perspective will demonstrate my ability to understand the emotional needs of my patients by tapping into my own degree of emotional intelligence. This is best conveyed in the context of my ability to exercise patience, minimize stress, and achieve the intended results in a timely manner. In this role, I have learned to exhibit a positive attitude and to be emotionally intelligent in the workplace environment. At the same time, I must absorb large amounts of information and filter it as best as possible in order to achieve the desired results and to promote healing. To be specific, “There is increasing interest in how people process emotionally relevant information. The ability to process it efficiently and accurately can have an effect on an individual’s life outcomes such as achieving success at work and their general well-being” (Por, Barriball, Fitzpatrick, & Roberts, 2011, p. 855). From this perspective, it is important to focus on the areas that are most important to my patients and to identify frameworks where I am able to utilize my emotions in an intelligent manner that is towards the greater good of the patient, rather than to waste time on areas that are less significant and less efficient. This process offers a distinct learning curve and supports my ability to shed any layers of doubt and to be fully aligned with the needs of my patients above all else. This process is difficult, yet it provides a basis for examining how to manage patient circumstances effectively and without placing them at risk. Through this type of intelligence, it is possible to develop a connection with patients that will support their concerns, while also growing and maturing in the nursing role in the process. It is essential that my professional growth will combine my knowledge, skillset, and emotional support in order to provide expert care and knowledge for my patients, along with an opportunity to learn new ideas and integrate them into the practice environment to provide a warm and comforting approach to meet their needs.
How do you view patient safety and what do you believe is required to improve safety and outcomes for patients?
Each and every decision that is made and action that is taken must reflect a commitment to patient safety and an opportunity to examine the core principles and values of patient care that will have lasting benefits for patients. With an ever-changing population, it is more important than ever to address their needs through professional growth opportunities and full engagement in all aspects of patient care and treatment. There must be a continuous emphasis achieving professional growth through decision-making and in supporting a dynamic whereby patient care is optimized and improved on a continuous basis. From a personal point of view, I am committed to making the most of each situation and to developing a framework that will have positive and lasting benefits for all patients, and I will work with my fellow nurses to optimize our resources to support patients as best as possible.
From a patient safety perspective, it is critical that all protocols and procedures are safe and effective for patients, while also considering the advantages of making changes as necessary to ensure that they are not at risk as a result of nurse-administered activities. This process is challenging because there are many difficult issues to consider with respect to organizational change, yet it also provides a means of understanding the dynamics of patient care and what may pose a risk or threat to patient safety over the long term. From this perspective, it is important for an organization to be mindful of its need to be proactive in working with patients to ensure that their safety is not compromised by lack of skill, knowledge, or resources. In accordance with prior principles, it is known that “Features of the hospital work environment (such as better staffing ratios of patients to nurses, nurse involvement in decision making, and positive doctor-nurse relations) are associated with improved patient outcomes, including mortality and patient satisfaction. This association is probably due to the important role of nurses in the surveillance system of hospitals” (Aiken et.al, 2012, p. e1717). With this approach, nurses must act in such a way as to monitor the impact of their decision-making on the larger picture of supporting patient needs in a timely manner. Nurses must be mindful of the impact of their actions and how they approach relationships with their colleagues, including physicians, and what these actions signify in the context of patient safety. When this process operates smoothly, it is likely that nurses will achieve opportunities for professional growth and development that will impact their decision-making and also influence how patient safety is managed.
What are the primary needs related to communication between nurses and patients, and how will these factors support and/or negate the patient care experience? What roles must nurses take on in order to become successful communicators with their patients?
As a nurse, I possess a responsibility to communicate with my patients and to provide them with opportunities to express their fears, to ask questions, and to participate in their plans of care whenever possible. As a result, communication must be timely, efficient, and provide a basis for examining the key variables of a given situation, while also demonstrating flexibility in order to ensure that patient outcomes are successful. From a research-based perspective, clinician-patient communication requires a unique understanding of the different perspectives that influence how patient care is administered, including underlying variables that influence how communication occurs and how it has a direct impact on patient care and outcomes (Street, 2013). Since communication is largely subjective, it may create opportunities for different interpretations that are less than ideal, thereby creating challenges in the clinician-patient relationship that might have otherwise not existed (Street, 2013). Therefore, these communications must be explored more closely and be recognized as an underlying factor in how patient outcomes are determined (Street, 2013). However, they are not the only concern related to patient health status that must be considered, as other key variables must also demonstrate a need for further clarification regarding patient needs, expectations, and outcomes that influence quality of life.
One of the most challenging and often most compromising issues in nurse-patient communication is trust, which is often very difficult to achieve because of the lack of enthusiasm, preordained fear, and overall apprehension regarding illness, recovery, and the healthcare system as a whole. These complications lead to new questions for nurses regarding how they communicate with patients and the exchanges that occur that may be nonverbal in nature. The concept of trust is difficult to achieve in relationships between nurses and patients, yet it may serve to bridge gaps in how patient care and treatment are managed and perceived. For example, “Nurses usually care for individuals who are most vulnerable when illness and other conditions do not allow them to be autonomous or self-regulative. They are also the closest health-care providers to patients. Patients usually have no choice but to trust them, especially when they are critically ill. Therefore, trust is a vital value in nurse–patient relationships” (Dinc & Gastmans, 2013, p. 501). With this statement in mind, I have discovered that in my own experiences with patients, there are significant challenges that must be addressed that have a distinct influence on how patients respond to different situations and obstacles, and this is an important step in understanding how to develop trust in this manner.
It is difficult for many patients to accept that they are ill and are dependent on others to provide care and treatment, and as a result, they may be highly resistant to change and acceptance of their condition. I believe that by offering a sympathetic ear to my patients, I am able to convey my concern and my desire to help them heal as much as possible, while also considering their needs and why they might be fearful or apprehensive. These experiences offer a learning curve that will provide an additional layer of support and engagement with patients, while also considering their health status and how they are perceiving their own health statuses. I must develop my own bedside manner that provides comfort, understanding, compassion, and acceptance that the patient is likely to have some degree of apprehension that may influence the care and treatment process. This requires continuous work in order to improve the relationship and to develop a level of trust that will contribute to effective patient outcomes and a strong recovery and improved quality of life that occurs as the patient receives the necessary care and treatment during hospitalization and beyond. This process is essential to a patient’s recovery; therefore, I must be able to optimize my skillset in order to build a level of trust that will satisfy the needs of my patients in a timely manner without additional complications that could hinder recovery in any way.
How does your knowledge base and continuous learning curve translate into the practice setting, and what do you perceive to be most important in your own learning within the context of nursing practice? What are your perceptions of advanced practice nursing and how does it support the growth of the profession?
Becoming an experienced and knowledgeable nurse requires an ongoing effort that continues throughout the career path. In other words, learning does not stop once I have completed by official educational requirements, as each and every experience provides some semblance of learning, whether it is how to communicate with a patient or a new skill that is acquired with a new piece of equipment. This is an ongoing effort that requires my full attention and focus in order to be successful in addressing the needs of my patients as best as possible. Therefore, I must continue to emphasize my own learning curve with different types of experiences, as well as traditional learning tools to support my career path. At the center of this process is my own level of maturity and my ability to engage in behaviors that are required of a professional nurse. This is an ongoing effort that requires a significant commitment and a greater emphasis on learning on a continuous basis that will support my professional maturity and growth in the field (Rhodes, Schutt, Langham, & Bilotta, 2012).
Advanced practice nursing continues to evolve and enable professionals to grow and thrive in a different type of setting, as the expectations are much higher and the knowledge base must grow to new heights. Advanced practice nursing supports and engages nurses in the expansion of the nursing profession to perform new types of duties, to have greater responsibility for patient care, and to be mindful of the challenges related to patient care that require a deeper level of thought and consideration (Lowe, Plummer, O’Brien, & Boyd, 2012). From this perspective, it is important to develop strategies whereby the activities that are performed throughout the nursing unit become more advanced and the knowledge base becomes even more complex (Lowe et.al, 2012). There is a need for nurses with advanced knowledge and skillsets to be integrated into the practice environment for a number of reasons, including taking the load of some of the physician-based responsibilities that could be directed towards advanced practice nurses, along with striking a balance among clinicians that will improve patient care and treatment over the long term. It is important for nurses to pursue advanced degrees to fill some of the needs of the nursing profession and to expand their roles to accommodate much-needed change and progress that will influence patient care quality. Therefore, I must continue to expand my own knowledge and skills so that I am able to contribute in an advanced practice role at a very high level. This will ensure that my patients receive the best possible care and treatment that is available.
From a regulatory perspective, there is evidence that demonstrates the importance of advanced practice nursing, particularly the role of Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS), which supports change within the practice setting (Fulton, 2012). This requires an understanding of the CNS role and what it means to the nursing profession, particularly when some states possess limited knowledge and experience in this area (Fulton, 2012). As nurses, we are responsible for moving our cause and our profession forward with the activities that we perform, and this is particularly relevant in the advanced practice setting and the CNS role. There must be a greater emphasis on the development of new factors that impact patient care, along with the identification of gaps in care and treatment that may be bridged with the growth of CNS roles within a given organization. This requires an understanding and acceptance of this role and its overall ability to be proactive in achieving the desired outcomes, along with enabling nurse specialists to engage in advancing the profession throughout the world. This role offers a more complex approach to patient care and an ability to perform duties that go beyond the traditional responsibilities of the registered nurse; therefore, describing and conveying the advantages of this role will support its growth and its continued integration into new practice environments.
What is your perception of evidence-based practice within the nursing profession and do you believe that it is transformative in improving quality of care and patient outcomes?
The complexities of the nursing profession create new challenges for patients and for the development of new strategies and perspectives to solve complex problems within the healthcare field. It is important to develop an ongoing effort to integrate evidence-based practice into the nursing profession in a variety of ways that will support and engage nurses in outcomes of care that are based upon successful strategies for improvement that have been learned through prior evidence. It is known that “Nursing practice based on evidence improves patient care, as compared to traditional practices. Moreover, as nurses are increasingly more involved in clinical decision making, it is becoming important for them to utilize the best evidence to make effective and justifiable decisions” (Majid et.al, 2011, p. 229). By using the clinical perspective, it is likely that nurses will increasingly engage in a variety of decision-making principles that will govern their practice environments that are grounded in prior evidence, and this reflects the importance of identifying evidence from research that will positively impact patient care quality and outcomes (Majid et.al, 2011). There must be a greater emphasis on the continued growth and development of the practice environment, using a variety of tools and resources that will influence decision-making throughout. Prior evidence-based practice that is generated through research is an important step in bridging these gaps in knowledge and in supporting what is necessary to promote patient healing and recovery at the bedside.
As with any new strategic method or approach to nursing practice, there must be a learning curve in place that will enhance the integration of the practice model and the ability to improve the delivery of care at the bedside; therefore, the integration of new forms of knowledge and an acceptance of this information is essential to the success of this endeavor (Dogherty, Harrison, Graham, Vandyk, & Keeping-Burke, 2013). Most importantly, nurses must learn how to facilitate the integration of evidence-based practice into the nursing environment through the use of knowledge-based experts, or facilitators, who work with nurses to identify specific forms of evidence that might be beneficial to the practice setting and develop a method to translate this evidence into the practice setting (Dogherty et.al, 2013). This process involves a team of nurses who work with the facilitator to identify areas of need, to identify the appropriate evidence to promote change, and to implement a new process with an effective strategy that will lead to the desired results (Dogherty et.al, 2013). These practice methods will also impact how nurses respond to different problems and whether or not they are willing or able to change in accordance with the evidence that is presented, and this is often a very difficult task to achieve (Doghety et.al, 2013). Most importantly, the facilitator must be able to identify an approach that will support change and that will encourage nursing staff members to recognize their responsibility to the practice environment, set aside their differences or objections to the process, and accept the transformative nature of evidence-based practice (Dogherty et.al, 2013). This will facilitate a more effective transition, particularly when nurses understand their own roles in executing a change to practice that is based upon prior evidence and the support that is required to achieve the intended outcomes (Dogherty et.al, 2013).
In spite of the advantages of evidence-based practice for nursing, barriers to its full acceptance remain, thereby creating opportunities to enhance the development and sustainability of new evidence as it is accepted and integrated into practice (Majid et.al, 2011). This process also impacts how nurses embrace research-based evidence, understand the concepts related to research methods, and determine what is required to facilitate a positive and meaningful experience for nurses. There appears to be a lack of depth in many areas of the nursing-based research skillset; therefore, it is important to develop these skills and to support the needs of the profession by embracing research and evidence-based practice as part of the new normal. From a personal perspective, I am still learning the totality of what evidence-based practice signifies for the profession, but I am fully intrigued and am a willing participant to learn and embrace what this skillset has to offer. I am open to change and to exploring prior research that will support opportunities for growth and change within the profession that will contribute to a dynamic and highly qualified workforce at the highest level of development.
I also believe that understanding the body of prior evidence that exists is a daunting task; therefore, it must be addressed in smaller intervals in order to determine which factors are most appropriate in meeting the needs of the patient population in question. This will ensure that the process of implementing a new practice that is based upon prior evidence is appropriate, timely, and efficient in meeting expectations and in improving quality of care. For example, the concept of holistic care may not be well understood by some nurses, but it reflects a void that must be filled in order to better understand the comprehensive needs of the patient population, which may include holistic care to improve quality (MacFayden, 2013).
What roles do chronic disease and health prevention/promotion play in the practice environment, and how might these principles play a role in advancing the nursing profession to promote greater management and/or prevention of disease?
From my perspective, disease prevention is a complex phenomenon that involves a variety of circumstances that influence change and progress within this area. Preventing disease requires an understanding of the key barriers to prevention, which include population-based differences, cultural identifiers, lack of available resources, and other issues that influence how an organization is able to accomplish its desired objectives in this area (Fineberg, 2013). Disease prevention also requires a greater understanding of the dynamics of patient care and treatment, as well as what prevents individuals from participating in behaviors that will benefit their health, rather than cause additional concern (Fineberg, 2013). From a prevention point of view, the following factors are noted: “Rather than dwell on the pathology of disease, preventive medicine focuses on risk. In curative care, the goal is usually to restore patients to their earlier, normal state of health…the principal professional responsibility is to the individual patient, whereas in preventive care, the focus is often at the population level and entails a responsibility to the entire community” (FIneberg, 2013, p. 85). From this perspective, it may be argued that nurses must examine problems not only in the context of individual concerns, but also in regards to how they impact entire populations; therefore, it is necessary to address these problems on a larger scale that embraces characteristics such as culture and behavioral standards that influence decision-making that contributes to the potential risk of chronic disease.
As a professional nurse, I am responsible for understanding the nature of disease and the methods by which human beings are able to behave in a manner that will facilitate positive health outcomes, rather than negative actions that influence their health in a negative manner. This requires my understanding of factors that influence health promotion and disease prevention from the perspective of the patient. I must also understand the connection between disease prevention/health promotion and policy, as this is one of the key drivers in the ability to overcome obstacles and to understand how to promote policy changes that are practical, reasonable, and aligned with the needs of the nursing profession (Bunnell et.al, 2012).
What do you perceive as the most critical issues that impact your profession in its current state, and what do you propose is necessary to address these concerns in order to achieve the intended results?
In the modern healthcare system, access to healthcare services, the cost of these services, staffing issues, and resource allocation are among some of the most critical issues that impact the nursing practice environment. On the basis of these issues, I believe that there must be a greater emphasis on nursing leadership as a key factor in advancing the nursing profession and on developing a strategy for growth that will contribute to effective outcomes for patients (McSherry, Pearce, Grimwood, & McSherry, 2012). Nurse leaders who have expert knowledge of the field, who have strong skillsets, are organized and detail-oriented, and are willing to change are essential to the success of the practice setting and the goals and objectives of nurses throughout the world (McSherry et.al, 2012). Therefore, it is necessary to develop and appoint leaders who are able to manage but who also lead others by example towards greater quality of care for all patients. In addition, leaders must also embody the core values and beliefs of the nursing profession, while also promoting an environment that will embrace change and provide a basis for examining new ideas that will effectively translate into favorable patient outcomes (Wong, Cummings, & Ducharme, 2013).
It is also important for nurses to show compassion for all patients across the spectrum, regardless of their health status, as this will enable patients to gain a greater sense of empowerment and to understand that nurses are taking the necessary steps that will ensure that their health and recovery are optimized (van der Cingel, 2011). From this perspective, it is necessary to develop strategies to facilitate improved patient care outcomes, while also considering other factors that influence health and wellbeing for these individuals (van der Cingel, 2011). From a patient-based point of view, it is a nurse’s responsibility to demonstrate compassion at the bedside and in all other activities throughout the nursing profession that will translate into positive and meaningful action towards improving healing for patients, while also considering other issues that influence health and wellbeing effectively and in a consistent manner (van der Cingel, 2011).
Based upon your skillset and knowledge base to date, how will you be able to impact the nursing profession in a positive manner, and what attributes do you bring to the table that will influence patient care quality?
Nursing practice introduces many different issues that require continuous evaluation and improvement, and it is my responsibility to address these concerns in an ethically responsible and appropriate manner at all times. Therefore, I must not only demonstrate compassion, but also a degree of sensitivity towards my patients that will positively impact their vulnerable state (Thorup, Rundqvist, Roberts, & Delmar, 2012). From this perspective, I must exercise sound and reasonable judgment when making decisions so that they are in the best interests of my patients, along with an understanding of the dynamics of patient care that will have positive and lasting benefits (Thorup et.al, 2012). In addition, I must demonstrate courage when working with all types of patients so that they receive the desired level of care that is administered appropriately and with a timeliness that will contribute to positive health outcomes (Thorup et.al, 2012). To be specific, “Courage thus seems to play a significant role in nurses’ ability to engage in care. Nurses’ own vulnerability, suffering and sore points seem to shape their courage” (Thorup et.al, 2012, p. 427). This reflects the importance of understanding the dimensions of courage within my role and to embrace said principles as a means of improving the care that my patients receive. This will facilitate a positive and meaningful experience for patients without additional challenges or complications.
I also believe that as a nursing profession, I must be able to adhere to all required policies and procedures set forth by my organization, as well as through state and federal laws. Under these conditions, there are significant needs that must be met that require a high level of focus and a critical understanding of the key principles and issues of the nursing profession. In this context, I must consider all possible variables that impact the care that I provide to my patients and aim to strike a balance between areas that may be difficult to accept and areas that could be changed in accordance with evidence-based practice and/or policy modifications. These principles are essential to the discovery of new ideas and insights that will influence my profession and my individual activities within this role. I must be open-minded to change and embrace the different perspectives that other nurses bring to the table, but also recognize the value of changing the dynamics of patient care when it is recognized that current methods are not successful. This will facilitate an effective response to change and provide a basis for examining new variables that will impact my role and improve my knowledge base and skillset.
Finally, I must continue to expand my knowledge base and skillset in response to the ever-changing demands of the nursing profession and the workforce, thereby creating new opportunities to achieve growth and to be effective in meeting the goals and expectations of the profession. There is so much to learn and I must be given the opportunity to continue my education as needed through training in a given skill area, learning how to use new equipment, or learning a new procedure. Therefore, the profession continues to grow and evolve in scope and approach, and I must be fully prepared to manage the needs of my patients and aim to recognize the value of patient care quality in all of the decisions that I make. Supporting patients and improving their health is the primary objective; as a result, I must be able to communicate effectively with patients, support their needs above all else, and learn from each and every experience in order to have a greater impact on the profession and the organization with whom I am employed.
From a professional nursing perspective, knowledge, experience, and a diversified skillset are necessary to improve quality of care and to accommodate patient needs. This process is instrumental in shaping a dynamic whereby patients are able to heal and recover from illness, as nurses lead by example in providing care and treatment in the required manner. This also reflects the importance of understanding the key components of nursing practice that have a direct influence on patient care and the ability to provide patients with a comprehensive approach to treatment that will have lasting benefits.
Nurses must continue to expand their educational opportunities and to identify areas of improvement on a regular basis to meet the needs of the ever-growing scope of the profession. This process is ongoing and requires new forms of training, strategic evaluation and change, and opportunities to change the face of the nursing field to improve quality of care. Nurses must be prepared for the challenges that lie ahead and take the steps that are necessary to accomplish the intended objectives of patient care, treatment, and the overall focus and intent of the healthcare industry.
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