Five Opportunities and Challenges for Workforce Advocacy Programs

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The following resources were adapted from the Texas Nurses Association and originally posted at www.CenterforAmericanNurses

1. Identify mechanisms within health care systems that provide opportunities for RNs to affect institutional policies.

  • Shared governance
  • Participatory management models
  • Magnet hospital recognition
  • Statewide staffing regulations
2. Develop conflict resolution models for use within organizations that address RNs’ concerns about patient care and delivery issues.
  • Identification of the reporting loop
  • Appointment of a final arbiter in disputes
3. Seek legislative solutions for workplace problems by reviewing issues of concern to nurses in -employment settings and introducing appropriate legislation, such as:
  • Whistle-blower protection
  • “Safe harbor” peer review
  • Support for rules outlining strong nursing practice standards
4. Develop legal centers for nurses, which could provide legal support and decision-making advice as a last recourse to resolve workplace issues.
  • Provide fast and efficient legal assistance to nurses
  • Earmark precedent setting cases that could impact case law and health care policy
5. Provide RNs with self advocacy and patient advocacy information, such as:
  • Laws and regulations governing practice
  • Use of applicable nursing practice standards
  • Conflict resolution and negotiation techniques
  • Identify state and national reporting mechanisms that allow RNs to report concerns about health care organizations and/or professionals