The policy topic selected for analysis is the Mandatory Continuing Education (CEU) for Registered Nurses (RN) License Renewal in Arizona State. The state of Arizona is among the American states that have no mandatory CEU requirements for RN renewal, which presents various problems to the public health. This topic is of great importance because the healthcare sector has undergone immense changes and progress and novel theories on illnesses have emerged as well as new trends in patient care. The nursing schools focus on providing students with recent information that drives the nursing field; nevertheless, facts may get regularly outmoded within the care environment as scientist introduce enhanced processes, treatments, and technology for dealing with various conditions (Govranos & Newton, 2014). Even though in some cases nurses are provided with some level of training to familiarize with the changes, every nurse should be responsible for obtaining the knowledge necessary for updating their capability to keep abreast of the evolving nursing field.
The policy will mark a significant improvement in the nursing profession, and it is a vital element in the provision of quality care. The system will help nurses become a reliable source of information for their clients (Baxter et al., 2013). Patients and their family members have the tendency of asking frequent questions on various aspects about healthcare, and it is paramount to offer them with reliable and correct information. Moreover, according to Govranos and Newton (2014), CE is an operative element in enhancing patient outcome and saving lives. For example, the rate of deaths from coronary artery illness has reduced by over 40 percent since the year 2000, which is facilitated by continuous technological advancement, novel medications, and improved procedures. These new improvements are communicated through CE to health practitioners. There is a need for public health policy makers, health professionals, and educational organizations to work jointly to adopt the necessary CEUs for RN license renewal to maintain nursing competence and improve public health outcomes.
Nursing values and ethics
In the nursing profession, it is important that individuals continue undertaking education to empower professionalism that all nurses strive to achieve and it is associated with tremendous public health benefits. Several years have passed since many nurses graduated from the nursing school and the majority has witnessed the significance of keeping pace with the current trends.
As stated earlier, the nursing profession is undergoing constant changes due to new technological invention and CE is one way that nurses can assist enhance the quality of life. CE provides nurses with fresh skills that are essential in improving patient outcome. It is evident that nursing does not involve similar strategies as those that were used two decades ago; therefore, it is imperative for nurses to stay updated on the imminent transformation of the nursing practice.
The policy is one way in which nurses can be a part of the solution to achieve enhanced patient outcomes at reasonable costs. There is a need to put additional efforts in disease prevention, caring for chronic patients, and providing end of life care. Chronic illnesses cause seven out of every ten deaths in America per annum and take up over 70 percent of the total health expenses. All in all, the majority of chronic illnesses can be prevented while others can be detected at earlier stages. Advanced technology on disease prevention and management has assisted the public to stay healthy and prevention deterioration of a disease condition. People with chronic illness spend $6, 000 more as compared to people without such conditions (Yoder et al., 2014). Nurses can assist in containing health care costs and reducing wastage of finances. The ever increasing cost of health services has pushed various stakeholders to call upon health practitioners to help with the reduction of the expenses. Nursing is one of the largest fields and can have an enormous impact on the reduction of healthcare costs. In 2013, Bates, Saria, Ohno-Machado, Shah, and Escobar (2014) report that an estimate of over 2,000 health organizations lost their reimbursed money due to a high number of patient readmission. Therefore, highly skilled nurses are needed in the healthcare setting to prevent readmissions and support quality care.
A report by Kemppainen, Tossavainen, and Turunen (2013) indicates that nursing accounts for over three million frontline practitioners and have the significant impact on patient outcomes. The author further argues that through continuous education, nurses will be in a better position to offer quality services to the public. It would serve to reduce the cost of healthcare. Nurses who work in the current era need to be highly skilled knowledgeable on the aspect of technology, health policies, and new research to enhance positive patient outcomes. The level of knowledge necessary for taking care of patients in critical conditions is not just obtainable through practice experience. There is a need for continued education to enhance competency and quality of care. Therefore, it should be a legal obligation for all nurses to update their skills to apply them to better health outcomes. While difficulties of assessing the benefits may exist, it is undeniable that CE improves knowledge and skill levels.
Ethics in nursing
The new policy is supported by the principles of nursing ethics. Nursing ethics describes moral judgment and standards of practice that has to be maintained in different situations. The principles include nonmaleficence, beneficence, autonomy and justice. The nonmaleficence principle underpins my view on the necessity of the mandatory CEUs for RN license renewal. This principle holds that nurses have to maintain competency in their practice to prevent causing harm and suffering to the patients (Ghazal, Saleem & Amlani, 2014). Lack of efficient skills may lead to medical errors that may have severe impacts on the patient’s health. The principle forms the foundation of the nursing care and involves reporting all forms of abuse observed in clinical settings. Nurses are required to refrain from all activities such as offering inefficient treatments and acting with wickedness towards the clients, and it is their legal duty to avoid harming the patients.
The obligation of every nurse is to create benefits and make a contribution towards quality care for individuals and then entire society. During medical care, patients are at a high risk of unpreventable harm that may be caused by prescriptions even when used right. Also, there is a significant risk of medication errors which may be categorized as preventable which may lead to inappropriate medication. Occurrences of this kind are linked to professional practice, medical procedures, tools, education, and communication. As reported by Ghazal et al. (2014), medications errors represent a critical aspect of clinical care and have an impact on patient mortality and morbidity as well as medical expenses. Patients visit healthcare organizations to seek care and have immense confidence in the system and the practitioners. Their expectations include that the healthcare providers are competent and will offer the most efficient treatment with respect to the principle of beneficence. As an obligation of the nurses, it is mandatory to eliminate conditions that may cause harm to the patients. CE enables nurses to be able to deliver the most effective form of care by acquiring new knowledge on the most recent advancements and research.
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