The Trends and Challenges Facing Nursing Practice

Theoretical Model of Health in Advanced Nursing
August 26, 2022
Allocation of Healthcare Resources
August 26, 2022

The Trends and Challenges Facing Nursing Practice

Introduction

Technology has enhanced my learning through the introduction of equipment and instruction techniques that augment my grasp of salient course concepts. Multiple innovations such as simulation, telecare, electronic health records, wearable devices, and telehealth applications have revolutionized nursing practice. Innovations such as simulation have improved the learning process by modeling and customizing virtual environments to replicate the hospital scene. Other technologies such as online learning have further reduced the cost of learning, improved attendance, and ease in access to teachers. Therefore, the role of technology in the learning process remains unrivaled and impactful in the health paradigm.

Learning experience could be improved through the integration of multiple technological models in the healthcare context. In the contemporary setting, innovation has spurred technological models such as telecare, electronic health records, wearable devices, and telehealth applications that have augmented the quality of patient care (Sapci & Sapci, 2019). Increased medical research on the relevance and significance of the above technologies could translate to affluent resources to boost healthcare service delivery. The key benefit of the technologies is the increased efficiency in the quality of care given to patients.

The type of technology resonating with my type of learning is simulation. Technological advancements have precipitated simulation as a preferred learning approach compared to the traditional apprenticeship system. Students practice in virtual environments on the simulator replicating real hospital scenarios such as theatre, ward, or emergency rooms. Training on the simulator provides students with numerous practice hours without risking patients’ lives, as in the case of conventional practice (Lamé & Dixon-Woods, 2020). The use of innovation in evaluating clinical tests could further boost the efficacy of clinical research.

Educator perspective

Technological implementations necessitate ethical values to streamline professional conduct and uphold human dignity during service delivery. Nursing comprises ethical values that dictate caregivers’ conduct and ensure the upholding of professional norms in practice. The critical ethical areas include personal privacy, right of access, copyrights, patents, liability, and other trade secrets. The ethical values shield patients and caregivers from harm stemming from unprofessional conduct, leak of private data, and cultural dilemmas during practice.

Students with shortcomings such as disabilities, inadequate technological tools, or low computer literacy require a customized program to improve their learning. The tailored program should emphasize attention to specific areas of weakness and creating a learning environment with growth potential. Customization of programs in conformity to students’ needs requires resources for effective implementation. In cases where resources are minimal, the teacher can seek alternatives that would impact their learning process. The exclusion of students with disabilities is not ethical. The nursing ethical principles require caregivers to exercise justice at all times. The discrimination of the less fortunate students amounts to a breach of the moral principle.

Technology Self – Assessment Improvement Plan

Kirkpatrick’s evaluation model outlines four main training assessment levels such as reaction, learning, behavior, and results. The first level comprising reaction, delves into how participants responded to the training. Understanding the learner’s perspective of the training method offers insight into the importance of the program (La Duke, 2017). The second step entails the evaluation of their learning. Learners should be examined after training to determine their mastery of the course contents. The penultimate element in the model is behavior; in this context, the learners are reviewed based on the impacts of training on their behavior. Interviews, project assignation, and observations can aid in the determination of behavior. The final element includes results, where the impact of the training is determined through the lens of the return on investments (La Duke, 2017). Kirkpatrick’s model offers thresholds that would remain relevant in assessing nursing education and introducing new technologies.

The assessment on technology, knowledge, and skills revealed an affluent understanding and grasp of technology. My mastery of the selected technology, simulation, is above average and falls under behavior on Kirkpatrick’s model. The initial step of evaluation – reaction – revealed positive feedback on the learning process. The interest in learning simulation as a teaching approach affirmed a positive reaction to the training. The evaluation of the next step, learning, revealed excellent performance with the use of simulation. The technology proved effective due to the lack of human subjects in the program and instant feedback on the processes (Djitog et al., 2018). The training has influenced my behavior, and the practice opportunities have revealed an increased ability to apply the concepts in real-life situations. The plan for developing and improving my technological skills includes increased practice and exposure to multiple simulation environments to improve the general understanding of their application in vast clinical settings. The plan also provides for the learning of diverse technologies to improve the learning outcomes.

Barriers and Facilitators to Integrating Technology

The technological challenges commencing 2017 to the previous years exhibit immense similarities. The implication is that the factors affecting technological integrations are expected and consistent within the social paradigm. The solution to the challenges requires a holistic approach that customizes a solution to the barriers. The possible future healthcare challenges include the training of students about non-hospital-based patient care. The emergence of telehealth has led to dependence on remote treatment. The escalation of such trends could present a major challenge to the training of future nursing students. In the current context, the nursing students are taught within the classroom paradigm, where they actively interact with the teachers. A shift from the current model predisposes the teachers to lack of active teacher participation translating to decreased outcome (Fawaz et al., 2018). The students may also fail to adapt to the new system of learning quickly. The emerging technological trends require extensive testing and research to ascertain their efficacy; educators should invest time and resources towards improving the outcomes.

In addressing the above challenge, simulation programs can be used in teaching the students. Through simulation, real-world learning scenarios can be replicated through virtual environments, allowing students to practically participate in the learning process (Shepherd & Burton, 2019). The challenge of instruction in online learning can also be solved using person-to-person software such as Skype or Zoom to replicate the classroom environment. Simulation and person-to-person communication software offer viable solutions to the challenges. Reliance on the above technologies could eliminate the challenges associated with online learning in the current dispensation. Research on other technologies could improve the overall outcome leading to implementation in multiple healthcare facets.

Short term: 1-2 yearsMid-term: 3-4 yearsLong Term: 5 or more years
2015Increasing use of blended learningGrowing focus on measuring learningAdvancing culture of change and innovation
Redesign learning spacesProliferation of open educational resourcesIncreasing cross-institution collaboration
2016Increasing use of blended learning designsRedesigning learning spacesAdvancing culture of innovation
Growing focus on measuring learningShift to deeper learning approachesRethinking how institutions work
2017Increasing the reliance on blended learningFocus on raising reliance on technology compared to the conventional methodsPromoting innovation in the medical sector
The focus is to ensure gradual and smooth transition to the emerging autonomous systemsExamining the efficiency of the new approaches and increasing their use where necessaryProactively testing innovations to ensure improved outcomes

Care

The duty of care is firmly embedded in nursing practice through the code of ethical conduct and service delivery. In nurse education, the burden of care can be upheld through increased attention to the learners, fair treatment of inferior or marginalized learners, and cultivation of a culture of equity among the students. In paying attention to the learners, the nurse educator exhibits care by understanding the students’ needs and customizing effective solutions within the classroom setting. For instance, when a student shows difficulty operating equipment, the nurse teacher will assist them through a personal demonstration of the operational process and mechanism. The detailed attention enables students to quickly master the desired concepts and be at par with the cohorts. The fair treatment of all learners irrespective of their gender, race, culture, or background is integral. The contemporary classroom setting comprises learners from diverse backgrounds with distinct needs; equal treatment ensures active participation during learning (Henderson & Jones, 2017). Partiality in the treatment of certain groups of students could adversely affect their learning. Equal treatment of students has an intrinsic impact, causing them to grasp the learning concepts quickly. The duty of care can further be retained by cultivating a culture of commitment, compassion, competence, and conscience among the nurse students. Adherence to the above attributes could aid in maintaining the element of care in the learning environment.

My definition of care pegs on the 5Cs, including compassion, commitment, competence, conscience, and confidence. Compassion occurs when nurses empathize with their patients leading to the provision of quality care. Commitment entails the dedication to consistently deliver quality services to patients. Competence is premised on an exhibition of high standards of professionalism in the workplace. Conscience constitutes a demonstration of high levels of moral authority in the workplace; it enables nurses to make sound decisions even when the ethical principles conflict with personal values. Finally, confidence entails the belief in oneself and abilities to deliver quality results. The students will be encouraged to practice the above qualities to remain effective in their work delivery.

Academic Practice Partnerships Reflection

Academic-practice partnerships are hinged on the principles of strengthening nurse practice to transform them into practical change elements for advancing public health. The Academic-Practice Partnerships Tool Kit offers a basis for establishing a strong relationship with other partners to augment care delivery quality. The salient elements described on the implementation template include the intention of both parties, what they want to offer, and their overall goals and missions provide a firm basis for assessing partnerships. The holistic approach used in determining the nature of the relationship enables a comprehensive view of the partnership groups leading to practical outcomes.

In my current workplace, academic practice partnerships play an integral role in improving the quality of service delivered to patients. Partners such as the government and private research institutions provide overwhelming support towards establishing quality practice through evidence-based practice studies, innovations in medicine, and funding of research to improve service delivery (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2016). The academic practice partnerships are resourceful and boost the quality of nursing service.

In implementing mutual respect and trust as the basis for a practice-academia relationship, the parties to the relationship need to jointly exhibit the attributes of accountability, transparency, conflict management competencies, and meaningful engagements (Phillips et al., 2019). The above elements improve mutuality between the groups and describe their shared goals to improve service quality. The partnerships’ overall effectiveness dwell on the commitment of each party towards the fulfillment of the intended goals.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) 2010 statement and AACN-AONE guidelines prescribe principles that define academic-practice partnerships. One of the events experienced in my organization that conforms to the Institute of Medicine precepts is the lifelong commitment for the partners to work together in determining an evidence-based program to ensure cost-effectiveness in learning. The collaborative effort by the partners led to the establishment of competent technological programs for the effective teaching of students.

Data and Workforce Planning

Workforce planning is a strategic process for determining the future needs of the human resource department and planning for future transitions. Organizational changes are inevitable, and every change process requires resource planning to improve the outcomes. Workforce planning should entail predicting the future needs of the organization and proving resources to cater to the needs (Willis et al., 2018). An accurate forecast of the human resource needs involves collecting data such as age, terms of employment, academic qualifications and experience, and the inherent changes in the organizational structure. Data on the ages of the existing employee base aids in the planning of retirement and coaching of the members. The human resource management can use the data to initiate the recruitment of new employees to take over from the retiring workforce. Data on the terms of employment also facilitate workforce planning. Employees under permanent and pensionable jobs may stay in the organization longer than those employed on a contractual basis. The understanding of the contractual agreement aids in the planning for the replacement of the existing workforce. The academic qualifications and experience may also determine workforce planning. The changing needs of the organization may require employees with a specific set of skills; the human resource can utilize the performance data to assess the salient future skills necessary in the organization (Domagała & Klich, 2018). Finally, the changes in the organization structure and mode of operations also affect workforce planning. In cases where an organization intends to adopt semi-autonomous systems, a certain group of employees will be laid off to pave the way. The management must plan to ensure minimal resistance and easy transition to the new mode of operation. The above data can also be collected to aid in the formulation of workplace policies. For instance, the data on age may be used to formulate a policy about the maximum age of service for the employees. The data can help employees in proposing friendly policies that may enhance their wellbeing over the long-term period.

Personal Academic Progression

The joint statement on Academic Progression for Nursing Students and Graduates reveals the future needs of the nursing profession in the United States. The report projected that in 2020, approximately 1.2 million additional registered nurses would be needed to offer assistance in various healthcare institutions. Cognizant of the technological transformations in the nursing field, my progression trajectory will conform to the tenets of technological developments. A plethora of research has shown significant improvement in healthcare provision through the adoption of technology. My academic progression plan will entail a focus on understanding the implementation of various technologies in nursing education. The major techniques that I would focus on include the use of simulation in medical research and training, wearable devices for patient monitoring, and telehealth and apps for offering remote assistance to the patients. During my studies, I will strive to understand the groundbreaking innovations that have transformed care provision in the institutions through collaboration with major agencies and state bodies to facilitate evidence-based research. The collaboration with other academic partners is envisaged to raise the quality of inventions through evidence-based healthcare practice. In executing my career plan, I will follow the guidelines stipulated in the professional development for nursing, which includes the identification of the nursing needs, prioritization of the learning needs, planning on the ideal method for learning through the statement of activities, executing the learning activities and evaluation of the outcome (Sawchuk, 2020). The final part includes recording the learning process by capturing the salient data about the learning activities. Adherence to the above pattern would translate to effective learning for career growth and progression. The professional development for nurses module offers a blueprint that would guide me through the career progression process.

Encouraging Interprofessional Collaboration

Interprofessional collaboration entails the working together of two or more professionals in a bid to achieve common goals. The collaborative approach has yielded proper output in various clinical settings leading to improved performance. Interpersonal collaboration dwells on the principle of two or more groups of people working together for a common goal (Reeves et al., 2017). The precepts can be fostered in various learning environments by assigning different professionals to work in a given environment (Homeyer et al., 2018). For instance, the doctors, nurses, administrators, managers, and information technology technicians can be placed in a similar work environment to foster the outcomes.

Academic nurse educators can create a sense of community in the online classroom through active engagement of the class members, assigning members group activities, and attention in discussion forums. The active engagement of class occurs when the teacher posts random questions to the members and requiring their response. The approach causes the students to become attentive and jointly follow the teachings. Assignment of members into groups enables the members to freely interact with one another as they attempt to solve the teachers’ questions. Finally, discussion forums present students with opportunities to contribute to discussions and have discourse on essential points. The above strategies enable students to unite and create a community forum inside the online classroom.

The educator can facilitate interprofessional collaboration in the online classroom through online team-building exercises, providing the students with opportunities to exhibit their technological ideas and encouraging leadership communications between students from different professions (Homeyer et al., 2018). The constant interactions cause the students to gain insights about practicing in other occupations. Online platforms such as Zoom or Skype increase communications translating to an active exchange of ideas.

The Value of Change Theories

Change is inevitable in any organizational setting and requires strategies for effectively implementing. The theories offer blueprints upon which changes can be implemented without the inherent opposition from the organization members. Technological integration and adoption entail changes in the organizational structure and processes that directly affect employees. In healthcare, autonomous systems are increasingly innovated to aid in the execution of medical tasks. Besides, the fear of the unknown may lead to minimal support from the administrative team (DuBose & Mayo, 2020). The complex nature of change requires strategic implementations to minimize any adverse outcomes. The theoretical models provide a framework for the strategic execution of the change process.

Resistance to technological change has been witnessed across vast social paradigms. The factors contributing to the resistance to change include the fear of the unknown, lack of communication, and mistrust of the process. During my internship, the management of the institution sought to introduce the electronic registry system. The employees in the registry department resisted the intended change causing stagnation in the organizational processes. The resistance to technology influenced my ability to serve patients in the wards efficiently. The insistence on using paper records lowered the speed of work leading to low performance. Resistance to changes in technology, therefore, has adverse impacts on organizational processes.

Change theories offer a blueprint for rolling out intended changes within an organizational paradigm. The postulations made in theory can be used as guiding steps for implementation in any environment. For instance, in Lewin’s change theory, Lewin described three major processes: unfreezing, changing, and refreezing (Burnes, 2020). During unfreezing, awareness about the need for the change process is created, and the members are educated about its significance. At the changing step, transitions occur, and the intended change is executed. At the refreezing stage, the change is reinforced to become effective. Following the change process translate to a helpful blueprint provided by the theory.

Final Course Reflections

My initial knowledge of the trends and challenges facing nursing practice include technological integrations, workplace violence, understaffing, and long working hours. Technological integrations have led to increased resistance by employees, resulting in the jeopardization of the intended change. Understaffing, on the other hand, stems from the high nurse-to-patient ratios; the result is overworking of the nurses leading to reduced quality output. Notably, nurses have been subjected to long working shifts leading to increased fatigue. The above challenges have permeated the practice and adversely influenced the outcomes.

This course has provided significant insights on key change elements within the technological field that could augment service delivery. As a nurse educator, course elements such as Kirkpatrick’s evaluation model increased my understanding of the teaching process and would enable me to address the various needs of the learners. Notably, skills such as handling a change process would enable me to understand the process for implementing change and its significance. The insights gained throughout this course would boost my teaching skills to ensure effectiveness in instruction among students from diverse backgrounds.

During my professional development, I will aggressively pursue knowledge on implementing technology in nursing to boost my skills. I will also practice in diverse healthcare environments to gain insights on how to execute different functions. Furthermore, I will explore interprofessional collaboration to boost my ability to perform certain tasks and further raise performance levels. Overall, the entire course has been highly informative and providing valuable tips for the general nursing practice.