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Nursing Assignment: Influence of IOM Report on Nursing Practice


Task: Review the Institute of Medicine's 2010 report "The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health." Write a report on nursing assignment discussing the influence of the IOM report on nursing practice.


As per the research on nursing assignment, the framework for a comprehensive legislation of the provision of healthcare emerged in the United States in 2010 when the national Congress passed a law whose consequences in the healthcare system would be far-reaching. With the strategic implementation of what is collectively known as the Affordable Care Act or ACA, the United States, it was speculated, would be able to radically transform its healthcare system(Altman et al., 2015). With the growing national demography, the critical issue that the broken healthcare system of the Regan era needed to address was how to treat the surplus 32 million Americans who were uninsured, among whom a significant portion was the aged populace. The population came from diverse socioeconomic conditions, and addressing their healthcare needs were more urgent than ever with the increasing privatisation of the healthcare systems. Many stakeholders in the equation believed that in order to make optimal healthcare more accessible to the populace, the health careindustry needs to expand the roles of all health care professionals that are involved in the dynamic: these professionals ranged from physicians who would provide primary care, nurses who would provide secondary assistance and pharmacists who would provide medicine according to the doctor’s prescription. This widespread disillusionment in the present systems of healthcare and the added interest to make healthcare more accessible to people across a diverse spectrum gave way to the celebrated IOM report “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health”. The present report shall discuss the recommendations and consequences of the report on the healthcare industry, and try to deduce the value that the report holds in the domainof nursing.

The report, in question, came into being as a result of a collaborative effort between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the Institute of Medicine (IOM) (Bleich, 2011). These two institutions partnered to address the need to radically modify the policies and pedagogical frameworks that governed the nursing profession till 2010. As the profession of nursing represented the majority workforce in the health care industry with more than 3 million personnel, it was imperative to develop and manage the workforce in a way which would make them better equipped to handle health care emergencies.

The vision of the report can be summed up through its four principle recommendations which collectively serve to be a blueprint of radical change. These four recommendations were: (1) Nurses should be able to implement their professional training and education to the fullest extent in their practice. (2) Nurses should be adequately educated and trained through a state of the art education system whose final aim would be to see that the academic progression is seamlessly promoted. (3) Nurses should have equal importance, alongside medical practitioners and other health care professionals, in refiguring the health care system of the United States. (4) An improved data collection procedure and a redesigned information systems would be needed to accommodate to effective policy making and planning that would guide the workforce (Shalala et al., 2011).

The report is crucial since it focuses on the intersection between the health care basics that the diverse and segmented population need coursing their lifespan and the activity of the nursing professionals. It holds the view that the contribution of nurses through the delivery of care would improve the average health of the population of the United States. Due to the volume of workforce and their capacity to adapt to change, the nursing profession is thought to have the potential of causing sweeping changes in the US healthcare framework. The close proximity of the caregivers to their patients and their practical understanding of the care units placed the nurses in a unique position among the spectrum of health care agents. In this juncture, the introduction of the report had a profound effect on the education, leadership and research and evidence based practice of the nurses. Nurses have been traditionally recognized in the industry as secondary agents, but the report provided them with the power to assume a leadership position (Miles & Scott, 2019). The implication of the report on nursing leadership in the domain of healthcare is clearly visible.The report has enabled the nurses to be equipped with an understanding of modern technological units alongside their traditional caregiving training,which in turn has made them more attuned to the leadership roles they are required to play in the changed health infrastructure.

The nurses’ education and practice must evolve since the caregiving process has become much more complex. Nurses these days have to provide primary care to patients with chronic illnesses and use sophisticated technological devices,none of which would be possible if the curriculum was not developed accordingly (Fairman et al., 2011). As the population is growing, more and more aged people are being admitted to hospitals for various reasons. In order to accommodate to their unique needs, the nursing curriculum has to be more relevant. The study of nursing has been unique in the United States context as there are a number of educational pathways that would provide the student with an entry-level license to practice, and there has been an ongoing debate in the media, academics and institutional policy making procedures regarding the required level of education (LeFlore& Thomas, 2016). There are many obtainable degrees and certificates, from licensed vocational nurse (LVN) to the associate nursing degree (ADN) to bachelors’ programmes such as BSN and more advanced masters’ and doctorate degrees. The BSN degree is standardized in practice, and it gives them the necessary means to pursue a career in nursing. However, they should be prepared to be lifelong learners.

One of the recommendations of the report, in fact, was that the nurses should be lifelong learners. As nurses are unlike physicians who often specialize in a single aspect of the bodyofa medical subject, they have to acquire a more comprehensive knowledge about the discipline of healthcare. They have to participate in all stages of the health-illness continuum and therefore require a more holistic professional development. They have to work across various healthcare units and cater to a diverse population with various health issues, and therefore have to have comprehensive professional knowledge. Apart from the theoretical education and practical training, they have to gather pieces of knowledge from field operations and continuously evolve.

In the present healthcare system that is still evolving, nurses play a significant role in assisting the process of patient recovery. They work across multiple care units, including primary care, postnatal care, ambulatory care and long-term care with the aim of a betterment of community and public health(Waite &Nardi, 2019). They also spontaneously come up with innovative caregiving solutions that may be reflected in the delivery process. They work across a diverse spectrum of practice environments which include not only hospitals, community health centres and retail clinics, but also homes, schools and battlefields. They engage in a broad continuum ranging from disease prevention and health promotion to palliative care and cure, if and when possible (Fairman et al., 2011).

For many decades, restrictions on the scope of practice and policy-regulated limitations have undermined the nursing profession, barring them from achieving their full potential. However, the report shows that nurses can be instrumental in both general and advanced care systems. It can be concluded by saying that in order to cultivate a health care system that is accessible, sustainable and patient-oriented, the government will have to broaden the scope of education and practice for the nursing workforce of America.

Altman, S. H., Butler, A. S., &Shern, L.(2015). Assessing progress on the Institute of Medicine report The Future of Nursing.National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Bleich, M. R. (2011). IOM report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health: milestones and challenges in expanding nursing science. Research in nursing & health, 34(3), 169.

Fairman, J. A., Rowe, J. W., Hassmiller, S., & Shalala, D. E. (2011).Broadening the scope of nursing practice.Journal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association, 3(2), 88-90.

LeFlore, J. L., & Thomas, P. E. (2016). Educational changes to support advanced practice nursing education. The Journal of perinatal & neonatal nursing, 30(3), 187.

Miles, J. M., & Scott, E. S. (2019).A new leadership development model for nursing education.Journal of Professional Nursing, 35(1), 5-11.

Shalala, D., Bolton, L. B., Bleich, M. R., Brennan, T. A., Campbell, R. E., & Devlin, L. (2011). The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. Washington DC: The National Academy Press. doi, 10, 12956.

Waite, R., &Nardi, D. (2019). Nursing colonialism in America: Implications for nursing leadership. Journal of Professional Nursing, 35(1), 18-25.


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