NURS 6050 Advocating for the Nursing Role in Program Design and Implementation
NURS 6050 Advocating for the Nursing Role in Program Design and Implementation
Obesity is one of the health problems with increasing prevalence in America. According to statistics, the percentage of the American population that is affected by obesity has been rising significantly over the past years. The implication is that a significant proportion of the population is predisposed to chronic illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease (Liu et al., 2019). Programs have been implemented to ensure that the prevention and reduction of rates of obesity in the US. Therefore, this paper explores a program in my practice implemented to address obesity.
Tell us about a healthcare program, within your practice. What are the costs and projected outcomes of this program?
The program within my practice that has been implemented to address obesity is the Obesity Prevention Program (OPP). The government of Texas came up with the OPP program with the aim of preventing and reducing the rates of obesity in the state. The fact that a third of the population in Texas was obese in 2015 necessitated the implementation of the OPP program. A number of principles guide the program. They include improvement of social determinants of health contributing to obesity, improving health equity, increasing resource availability, and transforming environments to address physical activity and healthy eating. Several initiatives have been adopted in a bid to achieve the objectives of the program. They include increasing opportunities for healthy eating, promoting active living through the creation of healthy environments, and provision of community and clinical preventive services for the populations at risk and affected by obesity. The program also strengthens the opportunities for healthy childhood for the children at risk as well as public health campaigns to address obesity (Texas.gov, n.d.). The costs incurred in the implementation of the program are obtained from the public resources. The projected outcomes include the reduction in the rates of obesity in the state, reduction in morbidity and mortality rates, and access to healthy foods and environments for the population (Ash et al., 2017). The program is also anticipated to improve the health and wellbeing of the Texans as evidenced by their increased awareness, lifestyle, and behavioral change on issues that affect their health.
What is your target population?
I learned from my research that the program targets all the populations at risk and affected by obesity in Texas. The populations include children, adults, and the elderly in the state. The program addresses the social inequalities that contribute to obesity in the state. It also increases the opportunities for healthy living for the population irrespective of their backgrounds.
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What is the role of the nurse in providing input for the design of this healthcare program? Can you provide examples?
I have learned from my experience and research that nurses play several roles in providing input for the design of the OPP program. The first role that they play is ensuring that the strategies of the program align with the anticipated goals and objectives to be achieved. For example, they ensure that the adopted strategies are relevant to the needs of the populations affected and at risk of obesity. The other role of the nurses in providing input for the design of OPP is ensuring that the needs of the target population are incorporated into the program. For instance, they perform needs assessment to identify health-related aspects that should be prioritized in the project, hence, relevance of the project to the population (Lavie et al., 2018). The other way in which nurses influence the design process is assisting in the determination of the resource needs of the program. Adequate resources such as financial and human resources are needed for the successful implementation of the program. As a result, nurses can participate in providing insights into the needed resources based on their experiences with public health programs.
What is your role as an advocate for your target population for this healthcare program? Do you have input into design decisions? How else do you impact design?
My roles as an advocate for the populations at risk of and affected by OPP program are varied. One of them is ensuring that adequate awareness is creating among the population on the need for the program and utilization of its strategies. Health education is needed to ensure that those at risk and affected by obesity understand the lifestyle and behavioral interventions that are needed for their health and wellbeing. My other role as an advocate is ensuring that the population has equal access to and utilization of the program initiatives. I ensure that all the populations affected and at risk of obesity have enhanced access to program resources to promote their health. I address barriers such as costs related to the utilization of the program by the population. I also link the population to the resources that they need (Cheng et al., 2021). For example, I assist them in accessing community support groups where they can access the help they need in managing and preventing obesity. I have input on the design decisions. I work with other stakeholders in developing goals, strategies, and objectives of the program. I also participate in the determination of the resource needs of the program.
What is the role of the nurse in healthcare program implementation? How does this role vary between design and implementation of healthcare programs? Can you provide examples?
Nurses play a number of roles in the implementation of healthcare programs. One of the roles of nurses in healthcare program implementation is acting as implementers. Nurses participate in the actual implementation of the strategies of the program. They put into action the strategies that were developed to actualize the program. The other role of the nurses in program implementation is coordinating the implementation process. Nurses can participate in ensuring that the strategies of the program are implemented as expected. They also ensure that the allocated resources are utilized optimally to ensure that the goals of the program are achieved. An example is working with the project management team in evaluating the resource utilization versus the plan to determine any deviations and implement changes (Lavie et al., 2018). The roles however vary in program design and implementation. Nurses participate in the development of program plans in the design. They implement the plans in the implementation phase. The design phase is also hands-off; as it entails strategy development while implementation is hands-on as it encompasses actual use of strategies in practice.
Who are the members of a healthcare team that you believe are the most needed to implement a program? Can you explain why?
The members of the healthcare team that I believe are the most needed to implement OPP program are registered nurses, dietician, and physicians. Registered nurses play roles such as screening, health education, and follow-up of patients with hypertension. Dietician plays roles such as nutritional assessment and counseling for obese patients and those at risk. Lastly, physicians diagnose and treat the obese patients.
Overall, OPP is an effective program that addresses the issue of obesity. The program ensures that the affected and populations at risk of obesity are empowered on ways of living a healthier lifestyle. Nurses play critical roles in program design and implementation. Therefore, their active participation should be prioritized in program implementation and design.
Ash, T., Agaronov, A., Young, T., Aftosmes-Tobio, A., & Davison, K. K. (2017). Family-based childhood obesity prevention interventions: A systematic review and quantitative content analysis. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 14(1), 113. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-017-0571-2
Cheng, H., George, C., Dunham, M., Whitehead, L., & Denney-Wilson, E. (2021). Nurse-led interventions in the prevention and treatment of overweight and obesity in infants, children and adolescents: A scoping review. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 121, 104008. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2021.104008
Lavie, C. J., Laddu, D., Arena, R., Ortega, F. B., Alpert, M. A., & Kushner, R. F. (2018). Healthy weight and obesity prevention. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 72(13), 1506–1531. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2018.08.1037
Liu, Z., Xu, H.-M., Wen, L.-M., Peng, Y.-Z., Lin, L.-Z., Zhou, S., Li, W.-H., & Wang, H.-J. (2019). A systematic review and meta-analysis of the overall effects of school-based obesity prevention interventions and effect differences by intervention components. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 16(1), 95. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-019-0848-8
Texas.gov. (n.d.). Obesity Prevention Program. Texas Department of State Health Services. https://www.dshs.texas.gov/obesity/