Professional nursing performs an important role in the lives of patients and the patient’s families. Nurses have frequent interaction with patients and they are better placed at understanding the situations of the patients than the physicians who attend to them. Nurses are part of healthcare professionals; they are an integral part of quality healthcare given to patients (Ferrante, 2005). The roles played by the professional nurses are the subject of this paper. This is a report of an interview conducted with different professional nurses on the roles of professional nurses in giving quality healthcare to patients. The departments from which the nurses were sampled and interviewed include administration, education, clinical specialist, staff nurse and research.
The Roles of Professional Nurses
According to the findings, nurses have different expertise and work as a team to achieve quality and safe services to their patients. Each nursing department has ways of utilizing and valuing the information of other disciplines in order to tackle challenges associated with patient care. For instance, the nurse interviewed from the administration explained that other nursing disciplines provide expert opinions required for the efficient functioning of the department. The nurse reveals that the rehab team is very instrumental in offering particular information on body mechanics on the means of transferring patients from their bed to chair and back to bed. The administration facility integrates the teachings from the executive nursing team to ensure that the nurses do not cause harm to themselves; moreover, the nurses pass the knowledge to the families of the patients to also ensure they do not cause harm to themselves. In terms of administration, the nurse is not very engaged with any particular discipline. It is evident from the findings that every nursing expert team has a role to play within the hospital; there is the interconnectivity of roles that ultimately lead to a high quality of services and healthcare to patients. This implies that each nursing department plays a role in every other nursing department.
Team building and collaboration are very important for the nursing teams to achieve their goals and objectives, especially in the context of inter-professional teams. First, the teams must be conscious of the reasons they are in existence; this means they must be aware of their roles. The teams achieve team building and collaborative strategies by ensuring that each nursing team gets an opportunity to share the strategies it has for the facilities they are involved in. Further, the nurse executives are expected to set the vision and work together to achieve a common goal. Having the end result in mind is another important strategy used by the various disciplines within nursing expertise, which is the provision of the best healthcare for patients in the hospital. The nurse educator is charged with the responsibility of providing training to every nursing profession based on specific and appropriate needs. The strategies also involve collaborating with the patient conference team; each nurse is offered an opportunity to give comments on patients. The team also ensures there is a proper plan in place before getting to the next patient.
Across all the nursing expertise, it is evident from the findings that the care given to patients comes in varied forms. Nurses assist one another in ensuring that care is applied to a particular nursing situation by motivating fellow nurses to adopt the use of evidence-based practices or simply use empirical approaches in their daily undertakings as nurses. Care is also ensured in the nursing practices by embracing the use of technology; in this case, the nurses are encouraged to make maximum use of technology, besides they get the necessary support during the transition period of change to different technology.
From the findings, it became evident that nurses not share the same expertise; each group of nurses has different expertise to offer. Nursing is seen by the respondents as a diverse profession that is more than the sum total of all its parts. For instances, the nurse executive is expected to enthusiastically contribute towards strategic planning and structural execution, policy formulation and also setting organizational standards that should be adopted by the whole nursing fraternity. The clinical nurse is charged with the responsibility of implementing the formulated policies within the appropriate facility in order to maximize the quality of healthcare given to patients. The bedside nurse performs the responsibility of giving an express care to patients in the hospital; she is also expected to be the patients’ advocate in matters important the patients. She also links the physician with the patients to ensure high quality healthcare services are given to the patients. The Chief Nursing Officer promotes and enhances safety and healthcare quality for the patients in the hospital; the administration supports the initiatives of all nurses to help achieve this.
In each nursing team, the quality of patient safety and monitoring of outcomes are monitored through a specially established Risk Management Module. This is meant to ensure proper patient care; closely related to this is the determination to provide patient centered care which is actually centered on what the patient may want; this may vary in terms of spiritual, physical and cultural needs. In some cases, the patient has to be listened to in order to establish what she or he needs.
In order to improve services given to patients, nurses have embarked on research activities; they get support from the administration. The nurses are expected to come up with research problems, have an over-view, peer review documents and use tools that have been proven and recommended for the research.
Information technology is very important in the management of data about various patients. The use of information technology is guided though set policies and guidelines. Amongst these policies and guidelines include the fact that all nurses are expected to sign an agreement form in which they commit to keep all patients’ information secret and also to ensure that they do not disclose their passwords to anybody else or leave their accounts accessible to anybody who access the computer.
Comparing nursing practices, a registered nurse does the role of bedside care to patients; the clinical nurse is charged with the responsibility of accompanying the physicians around the wards primarily to advocate for the patients. Moreover, the clinical nurse may also engage into more complicated interventions like prescribing alternatives and adjusting drips in the process of treating the patients. In most cases, the extra interventions do not require the approval of the relevant physician.
The role of professional nursing is very important in the process of taking care of the sick people in hospitals. Most important is the fact that nurses are able to provide services based on their expertise which has been necessitated by the need to specialize in a given area of expertise. The different expertise have made it crucial for the nursing teams to work together since their main mission is to provide the patient with better healthcare services. Due to the different skills possessed by different nurses, the patients and their relatives get the best of healthcare services. This has been enhanced by the use of information technology and the fact that nurses of different expertise offer their ideas on how best they can improve the healthcare services provided by the entire nursing fraternity to the patients and their families. It is then important that the strategies used by nurses be supported and improved through continued research and collaboration with other healthcare agencies.
The nursing profession has several expertises. This implies there are many facets of nursing. In providing healthcare to patients, the nurses form teams depending on their expertise and the teams work together to provide different expertise to ensure better quality healthcare to patients. The nurses have integrated the use of technology in their everyday activities to effectively and efficiently offer optimized healthcare services to patients.
Ferrante, J. (2005). Sociology: a global perspective. London: Cengage Learning.