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What does it take to be an effective health advocate?

Discussion: Nurses as Health Advocates

What does it take to be an effective health advocate? As a nurse, you have many opportunities to advocate for patients and populations, whether formally or informally. Being an advocate involves more than knowing how to lobby or to whom to write letters. It requires passion and compassion, commitment and courage.

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In this Discussion, you will consider the attributes of an effective advocate for population health and/or the nursing profession. You will analyze those attributes that help nurses be a powerful force in improving the quality of health care and in this case especially, the needs of returning veterans and their families.

To prepare:

  • Review the article “On Being a Good Nurse: Reflections on the Past and Preparing for the Future” and “War, its aftermath, and U.S. health policy: Toward a comprehensive health program for America’s military personnel, veterans, and their families” found in this week’s Learning Resources.
  • Consider the multiple health care needs of returning veterans and their families.

By Day 3

Post two types of health needs returning veterans and their families might need. How might you advocate for the needs of this population. What type of advocacy skills would you need and how could you develop them. What responsibility does a nurse have to be an advocate? Give specific examples.

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