Week 11 Discussion: What Can Nurses Do?

Week 11 Discussion: What Can Nurses Do?

Week 11 Discussion What Can Nurses Do

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Many people, most of them in tropical countries of the Third World, die of preventable, curable diseases. . . . Malaria, tuberculosis, acute lower-respiratory infections—in 1998, these claimed 6.1 million lives. People died because the drugs to treat those illnesses are nonexistent or are no longer effective. They died because it doesn’t pay to keep them alive.

–Ken Silverstein, Millions for Viagra. Pennies for Diseases of the Poor, The Nation, July 19, 1999

Unfortunately, since 1998, little has changed. For many individuals living in impoverished underdeveloped countries, even basic medical care is difficult to obtain. Although international agencies sponsor outreach programs and corporations, and although nonprofit organizations donate goods and services, the level of health care remains far below what is necessary to meet the needs of struggling populations. Polluted water supplies, unsanitary conditions, and poor nutrition only exacerbate the poor health prevalent in these environments. Nurses working in developed nations have many opportunities/advantages that typically are not available to those in underdeveloped countries. What can nurses do to support their international colleagues and advocate for the poor and underserved of the world?

The current health care field is characterized by massive development, which calls for properly trained nurses. The training is critical for MSN prepared nurse to be well positioned to lead nursing reforms in healthcare system. Ideally, nurses should be properly equipped for leading healthcare reforms based on appropriate leadership competencies. As such, it is imperative for MSN-prepared nurse to identify personal leadership competencies and associated attributes to help in leading the reforms (Melnyk, Gallagher‐Ford, Long & Fineout‐Overholt, 2014). Therefore, the aim of this paper is to reflect upon personal leadership-related competencies and those with an opportunity for improvement and how the competencies will impact future practice as an MSN-prepared nurse educator.

Personal Leadership Competencies

Personally, there are many leadership competencies possessed that can help in bringing positive changes in my specialty as a nurse educator. The competencies include cognitive competencies such as problem identification and solution, clear and analytical thinking, and risk assessment and decision making. Another competency is the ability to lead the organization in different areas such as managing change, risk taking and innovativeness, problem solving and decision making, visionary and strategic, and influencing others and managing organizational politics. The other core competency I posses is communication competencies and leading others. These competencies are achieved through effective communication, developing and managing relationships, valuing diversity in the workforce, developing others, and maintaining effective collaboration. Other key competencies include team building competencies that focuses on employee training and mentoring, evaluation and performance, and counseling and disciplinary. Besides, administrative competencies which entails time management and priority setting, setting goals and standards, and work planning and scheduling.

Leadership Competencies that Characterizes Areas of Personal Strength

The leadership competencies that characterize personal strength include cognitive competencies and

Week 11 Discussion What Can Nurses Do
Week 11 Discussion What Can Nurses Do

communication competencies. According to Abraham & Scaria (2017), leaders with cognitive competencies often show greater skills in identifying the problems and seeking the appropriate solution. This competency is closely related to the risk assessment and decision making which is the ability to develop a decision matrix that help in recognizing and evaluating options, limits, risks, and desirables to be considered and consequently settling on one option to realize the desired goals. To succeed in the above competencies, I have shown ability of clear and analytical thinking by applying rational thinking to achieve logical conclusion.

Regarding communication competencies, I have been outstanding in areas such as listening and organizing. This is the ability to understand, organize, and appraise what I hear and decide the appropriate course of action to respond to massage. Communication competencies also encompass providing clarity of communication. It requires skills such as persuasiveness, maintaining an environment of mutual trust and benefit (Melnyk, Gallagher‐Ford, Long & Fineout‐Overholt, 2014). I have succeeded in communication competencies by getting objective information to acquire unbiased information and interpret them accordingly to enhance fairness.

Opportunity for Growth

The leadership competencies that require opportunity for growth and enhancement include team building competencies. Essentially, healthcare delivery is increasingly becoming a collaborative effort. Therefore, there is need to put more effort on aspects such as employee training and mentoring to enable the employees to attain higher levels of excellence (Melnyk, Gallagher‐Ford, Long & Fineout‐Overholt, 2014). There is also need to conduct a constructive performance evaluation to ensure that employees are on the right track. Team building competencies also include advising and disciplining employees to help in restoring performance and enhancing trust and respect. The other competency that requires growth and improvement is administrative competencies. The competency includes setting the goals and standard to facilitate clear understanding of the task and ensure dedication. It also involves time management and setting priority to help in mitigating interruptions in the operations of the organization.  Besides, the competency involves work planning and scheduling, which is critical in managing manpower assignments and processes and ultimately the success of clinical operations.

Implications for Advanced Nursing Practice

Nurse educators specialize in teaching nursing students. They are tasked with designing, implementation, assessment, and revision of nursing educational programs. Therefore, there is need to ensure competencies for nursing educators to help in fostering excellence in advanced expertise role of nurse educator (Finkelman, 2017). The competencies play a crucial role of developing nursing education as specialization practice area and establish means for faculty to show richness in their role.

Essentially, leadership competencies will impact practice in the future nurse educator role by contributing to leadership development and also aiming enhance health service provision and leading health policies and reforms (Finkelman, 2017).


Leadership competencies can be crucial in selecting, developing, and promoting leaders in an organization. It is crucial to consider factors such rapid developments in healthcare systems, business strategy, and future trends while developing leadership competencies. In my role as a nurse educator, I will exploit the leadership competencies strengths which include cognitive competencies and communication competencies to help in creating positive outcomes in healthcare delivery. Besides, I will strive to work on other vital competencies that require opportunity for growth such as team building competencies and administrative competencies to enrich my skills and become effective rounded nurse leader who can drive organization to success. Taken together, the personal learning insights from this essay is critical for building a unique set of skills which will benefit the organization to maintain competitive advantage when applied effectively.




Abraham, J., & Scaria, J. (2017). Emotional intelligence: the context for successful nursing leadership: A literature review. Nurse Care Open Acces J, 2(6), 160-164.

Finkelman, A. (2017). Professional nursing concepts: Competencies for quality leadership. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Melnyk, B. M., Gallagher‐Ford, L., Long, L. E., & Fineout‐Overholt, E. (2014). The establishment of evidence‐based practice competencies for practicing registered nurses and advanced practice nurses in real‐world clinical settings: Proficiencies to improve healthcare quality, reliability, patient outcomes, and costs. Worldviews on EvidenceBased Nursing, 11(1), 5-15.