What are your plans for the future?
Again, this course has reinforced the importance of political activism not just as a United States Citizen but as a nursing professional and expert. Moving forward, I’ll network, collaborate with key stakeholders, become an active member of my local nurses' association as well as my local and national certified registered nurses’ association. Together, we can join forces in moving our nursing profession forward as well as being great advocates for our patients. As an active member, I can contribute to our political action committee (PAC) that helps support politicians and lobbyists that support the nursing interest. I can volunteer my expert advice to policymakers to help shape policies so patients’ interests will be protected. I hope to be active in my local community helping share nursing knowledge, healthcare advice, as well as healthcare resources so we can build healthier and stronger communities. I’ll also advise young nurses to further their education and become advanced nurses as this helps strengthen their voices as political activists, giving credit to their views, advice, and suggestions.
Will you heed the call for action and join an organization like Nurses on Boards or become engaged with the National Nurse Campaign?
Yes, most definitely. Nurses are sociopolitical actors who promote improvements in health in our different facets of the profession (Melo, 2017). We are the frontline agents at almost every level of the healthcare system and the largest (Rasheed et al., 2020). We have a social mandate, to speak up for social justice and against health inequalities, to be advocates for public health issues, help reduce healthcare costs, medication errors, promote patient safety, enhance the quality of care, prevent, and manage communicable diseases (Buck-McFadyen & MacDonnell, 2017; Horton et al., 2019; Rasheed et al., 2020). I must therefore join an organization such as Nurses on Boards. In partnership with other leaders, will work tirelessly to promote change within the healthcare organization and improve healthcare outcomes for patients and the community.
Will you join a professional nursing organization?
Yes. I will join the Maryland Association of Nurse Anesthetists (MANA), the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA), as well as the American Nurses Association (ANA).
Do you have other ideas that would work to benefit your community or an organization that is important to you?
My idea is to engage my entire community in political activism, teaching others how to use their voices. I’ll join the community drive in helping those non-registered and eligible voters to register to vote. I’ll knock on doors, going door to door, encouraging others to vote, sharing why their voices are crucial and together we can improve outcomes, decrease social disparities, and improve quality of life for all.
Share with the class what your plans are now that you have a new awareness of your abilities and capabilities to provide advocacy beyond the beside?
I plan to engage and encourage other nurses to become politically active especially the young nurses or nursing students. Frequently, I’m invited to my nursing school alma mater to give a presentation on nursing courses or topics important to the profession. I plan on making political competence one of the topics. I believe that educating our young nurses early will be a great way of exposing them to politics and its importance. Through political competency and engagement, we become change agents, better patient advocates, protecting patient rights and safety, promoting healthcare reforms, reducing health inequalities, medical costs, and positively influencing healthcare reforms at local, state, national, and global levels (Rasheed et al., 2020).
Compose your final Tweet about this class. Remember to be concise as Twitter only allows 140 characters. Share your Tweet in the discussion
Buck-McFadyen, E., & MacDonnell, J. (2017). Contested practice: Political activism in nursing and implications for nursing education. International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship, 14(1). https://doi.org/10.1515/ijnes-2016-0026
Horton, S. E. B., Todd, A. T., Johnson, K. E., Gaskamp, C. D., Guillet, N., & Murray-Chavez, J. (2019). Public health policy simulation. The Journal of Nursing Education, 58(3), 178–181. https://doi.org/10.3928/01484834-20190221-10
Melo, W. S. de, Oliveira, P. J. F. de, Monteiro, F. P. M., Santos, F. C. D. A., Silva, M. J. N. da, Calderon, C. J., Fonseca, L. N. A. da, & Simão, A. A. C. (2017). Guide of attributes of the nurse’s political competence: A methodological study. Revista Brasileira de Enfermagem, 70(3), 526–534. https://doi.org/10.1590/0034-7167-2016-0483
Rasheed, S. P., Younas, A., & Mehdi, F. (2020). Challenges, extent of involvement, and the impact of nurses’ involvement in politics and policymaking in last two decades: An integrative review. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 52(4), 446–455. https://doi.org/10.1111/jnu.12567
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