Professional Advocacy Matters!

As the post-election season winds down, and we come to grips with how different this next presidency appears to be, we are faced with two choices. We can be upset, vent our unhappiness on social media and talk about it with our nursing colleagues. Or, we can reach out as professional nursing advocates to make a difference.

Healthcare access and coverage is still a central issue in the US. No matter what you think about the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) or the new president-elect, care and coverage for the uninsured and working poor is crucial and ongoing. The good news is that California has developed a successful program that could be used as a model for the rest of the country. The less good news is that other states are struggling to meet the performance pillars of the ACA. While it appears that the president-elect will attempt to dismantle at least parts of the program, there is ample opportunity for professional advocacy around this issue.

RNs are the most trusted profession in the country. With that reverence, comes great power! Find a local cause about healthcare you can get behind. My work in correctional healthcare as a strategic planning consultant allows me to identify issues that are otherwise hard to see within the community. I am passionate about healthcare for inmates released on parole or probation (prison or jail), so they do not end up in the ER seeking primary care.

As an RN, you have seen first-hand the issues that affect your patients. Find one that you are passionate about and get involved. Write an op-ed piece, run for elected office or work as a volunteer. There are plenty of community healthcare issues to care about. What difference can you make?!

Posted by Susan Odegaard Turner – MentorRN

Advertisements