NURS 6053 Organizational Policies and Practices to Support Healthcare Issues
NURS 6053 Organizational Policies and Practices to Support Healthcare Issues
National Healthcare Issue/Stressor
The COVID-19 pandemic has initiated an upheaval in society and has significantly cause considerable stress during this pandemic. Healthcare professionals have been on the front line during this health crisis, particularly hospital nurses in all specialty. The focus of this study was to assess the high level of stress of healthcare workers during the first wave of the pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic by an international study is questionnaires disseminated from collecting online demographic and stress-related data over the globe, during the pandemic. Stress levels were evaluated using non-calibrated visual analog scale, from 0 (no stress) to 100 (maximal stress).
The main outcome was work-related stress, measured with the use of a visual analog scale i.e. a non-calibrated horizontal line ranging from minimum (0) to maximum (100). Visual analog scale of stress is a validated tool commonly used in daily practice. With this type of tool, participants can self-assess in a simple way the range of their possible feelings. Secondary outcomes were sociodemographic (age, sex), occupations (non-healthcare workers, medical doctors, paramedical staff), and working conditions (working in usual conditions, working in unusual conditions, interruption of work). This was a computerized questionnaire hosted on the secure REDCAP platform. It consisted of about 100 questions. The study presented here reports on the answers related to work-related stress. Depending on the answers given, individuals had access to all or part of the questionnaire.
Women Healthcare workers more affected:
In our study, whatever their profession, women had the highest levels of work-related stress during the first global lockdown. Our results concord with the literature revealing that women are more prone to stress, and may also suffer more from the negative psychological impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. Women often have a double life combining work and family life. This is even less reconcilable when both professional and family constraints increase. Indeed, families had to adapt to the closure of schools. Even in couples that shared the involvement in the education and care of children, women are still mostly implicated. Given these elements and the predominance of women in healthcare professionals, the WHO advised to study gender-specific consequences of the pandemic. Even if women have less severe forms of COVID, they were frightened of contracting COVID-19. They may also have been more impacted by the higher number of deaths and difficulties during the crisis. Women show greater psychophysiological concordance and consistency than men, and may therefore present more psychological vulnerability. Improving Work -Life Integration (WLI) is likely to improve healthcare worker’s quality of life, organizational outcomes and, ultimately, quality of care for patients (Schwartz et al., 2018).,
Healthcare System Taking action on burnout
According to National Libraryy of Medicine During COVID-19, employers were noticing the need for intervention. Through employee assistance programs (EAPs) or health care insurance, mental health programs were offered. Some programs offered by mental health staff are stress reduction, cognitive restructuring and reframing, and grief counseling. Mental health can also help a nurse to recognize and admit to symptoms of burnout. COVID-19 was an introduction of EAPs and mental health checks that should occur routinely. Nurses will not always admit or even recognize that they need mental health support. However, if one knows the signs of burnout, they can see it in nurses.
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The national collaborative, which rolled out in 2017, has three main goals: better understanding the challenges to clinician well-being, raising the visibility of clinician stress and burnout, and elevating evidence-based solutions. To date, the collaborative has received commitments from more than 150 organizations, including health systems, hospitals, medical schools and state medical boards, to improve clinician well-being and curb burnout.
Jonathan Ripp, MD, MPH, chief wellness officer at Mount Sinai Health System in New York City also co-chairs the national Collaborative for Healing and Renewal in Medicine, which this March co-published a first-of-its-kind charter in the Journal of the American Medical Association that outlines fundamental principles for supporting provider well-being. The charter has been endorsed by more than a dozen organizations, including the American Medical Association and Association of American Medical Colleges.
Preventing, promoting appropriate support for healthcare workers may significantly reduce the effects contibutind to burnouts in organization;
1. Strong Interpersonal Relationships outside of work
2. Work-Life Balance
3. Healthy Lifestyle
4. Decrease Stress
7. Recognize Achievements
8. Healthy work Enviroment
The COVID-19 pandemic has and will have consequences for every population. Nevertheless, healthcare professionals were more impacted than other workers by work-related stress. Paramedical staff were more impacted on than physicians. Across all occupational categories, age appears to mitigate work-related stress, and maybe due to the effects of experience. We were able to identify risk factors for high levels of work-related stress such as youth, female gender, paramedical professions and having maintained one’s professional activity. The impact of such a surge in work-related stress may inflict a second blow to already fragile healthcare systems. Adequately monitoring work-related stress and its effects on healthcare workers may be crucial to plan for post-pandemic adjustments. The finding that burnout and poor wellbeing are both associated with poorer patient safety has significant implications for policymakers and management teams within healthcare settings (Hall et al., 2016).
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The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed many critical issues in the national healthcare system in the United States. The nursing shortage is among the top priorities because the whole system relies on nursing practitioners as the backbone. The statistics emphasize the urgent measures taken at each level of the government. As of March 2022, almost every state had taken executive actions to address the shortage, such as issuing temporary licenses to put nursing students to work (Zhavoronkova et al., 2022). The problem is significant enough to disregard the impact of competing needs in healthcare delivery.
Nursing shortage results from the impact of various external forces on the healthcare system. These include but are not limited to the aging population, aging workforce, nurse burnout, and population growth (Haddad et al., 2022). Therefore, the demand for registered nurses will be the highest among all professions. The reported growth will be at a faster rate (9%) than all other occupations, with more than 275,000 additional nurses being needed until 2030 (Haddad et al., 2022). The government actively invests in the development of nursing education and encourages more people to enter the profession and address the shortage. Nevertheless, the impact of competing needs in healthcare delivery persists. The available nurse workforce does not have sufficient resources to address all primary care needs. Alternative approaches such as preventative and chronic disease interventions and outpatient care models help close the gap, but they do not suffice (Korownyk et al., 2017). The nursing shortage is inextricably linked to diversity, aging, and education accessibility. For instance, the number of nurses has not kept up with the aging US population (Zhavoronkova et al., 2022). It implies that the new policies need to be comprehensive, addressing the factors and aspects of the healthcare issue.
In conclusion, the nursing shortage remains a central healthcare problem in the United States. It has many aspects and is related to other issues. Ignoring those related problems may not result in effective outcomes and a considerable increase in the nursing workforce. A more comprehensive approach is necessary for the government to ensure a long-term solution.
Haddad, L. M., Annamaraju, P., & Toney-Butler, T. J. (2022). Nursing shortage. In StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing.
Korownyk, C., McCormack, J., Kolber, M. R., Garrison, S., & Allan, G. M. (2017). Competing demands and opportunities in primary care. Canadian Family Physician, 63(9), 664-668.
Zhavoronkova, M., Custer, B. D., Neal, A., & Schweitzer, J. (2022, May 23). How To Ease the Nursing Shortage in America. Center for American Progress. Retrieved September 13, 2022, from https://www.americanprogress.org/article/how-to-ease-the-nursing-shortage-in-america/
I enjoyed reading your post. Before the class, I did not understand that there were additional factors contributing to the shortage besides burnout and underappreciation. The lack of educational resources such as instructors and, clinical sites is a major cause of the nursing shortage. My research led me to the Title VII and VIII education and training programs of the Public Health Service Act. “The Titles VII and VIII education and training programs of the Public Health Service Act are federal programs that help shape the supply, diversity, and distribution of the physician and health professions workforce to address current and emerging health care quality and access challenges/opportunities. (aamc.org, 2022) Although this Act deals with expanding resources for health professionals across cultures, I believe this act can aid in the provision of clinical sites for nursing students and, loan reimbursement. “Further, the impact of reimbursement, legislation, regulation, and technological advances must also be considered. Failure to consider the relationships among these aspects limits the full appreciation of the nursing workforce shortage complexity.” (aacnnursing.org, 2022) The nursing shortage needed to be dealt with head-on. Organizations are dealing with their shortages, but the government needs to do more.
AAMC. (2019). Increase funding and reauthorize the Title VII and VIII Health Professions Training Programs. Retrieved September 17, 2022, from https://www.aamc.org/news-insights/increase-funding-and-reauthorize-title-vii-and-viii-health-professions-training-programs#:~:text=The%20Titles%20VII%20and%20VIII%20education%20and%20training,and%20emerging%20health%20care%20quality%20and%20access%20challenges%2Fopportunities.
American Association of the Colleges of Nursing. (2022) Strategies to reverse the new nursing shortage. Retrieved on September 17, 2022 from https://www.aacnnursing.org/News-Information/Position-Statements-White-Papers/Reverse-Shortage.
Your post and observation on this issue is important and I would say I did witness the stress that Covid-19 brought to my job, community, and the country. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 as a pandemic on March 11, 2020, when infections and deaths began to increase exponentially worldwide. The first cases were reported during December 2019 in Wuhan, China (WHO, 2020). I worked at my local hospital here in Tampa, Florida and when covid came, the hospital did not know how to handle it, surgeries were limited to emergencies only, we lost hours at work and sometimes we were forced to work on covid floors against our will. It was frustrating! I had to get another job as I wasn’t making enough to support the family and eventually after a few months decided to finally face the devil (Covid-19) and took a travelling nurse job.
The stress and inconvenience brought by Covid-19 was tasking on both healthcare workers and patients. It was sad for health care workers to see their colleagues get the virus, suffer health consequences and die. The rapid spread of the disease created challenges for healthcare systems and forced healthcare workers to grapple with clinical and nonclinical stressors, including shortages of personal protective equipment, mortality and morbidity associated with COVID-19, fear of bringing the virus home to family members, and the reality of losing colleagues to the disease (Hall, 2020).
The burnout from the adverse effect of covid-19 combined with nursing shortage heightened the stress in the healthcare industry mostly with nurses bearing the brunt of it all. Colleagues at my job were constantly complaining, reluctant to work, at times I would hear nurses crying in the bathroom and break room. There were no early organizational strategies in place to assist employees with stressors related to Covid-19. Early detection of psychological distress and supportive intervention should be taken according to the associated factors to prevent more serious psychological impact on frontline nurses (Nie et al., 2020).
Hall, H. (2020). The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on Healthcare Workers’ Mental Health. Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, 33(7), 45–48. https://doi.org/10.1097/01.jaa.0000669772.78848.8c
Nie, A., Su, X., Zhang, S., Guan, W., & Li, J. (2020). Psychological impact of Covid‐19 outbreak on Frontline Nurses: A cross‐sectional survey study. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 29(21-22), 4217–4226. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.15454
WHO (2020). Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Available online at: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019 (Accessed: September 14th, 2022).