In general, health care policy currently refers to plans, decisions, and actions that should be considered and undertaken in order to achieve particular health care goals. It involves the creation, development, and implementation of specific rules, laws, and regulations for the management of the nations’ health care system. In turn, this system of health care includes services that are provided by professionals to prevent, diagnose, and treat injuries and acute or chronic physical and mental diseases. An efficient policy helps to define the vision of the health care industry for the future and establish short and medium-term goals. In addition, it outlines the expected goals and priorities of the medical staff involved in health care delivery.
It goes without saying that advanced practice nurses play an immeasurably significant role in providing society’s welfare. According to Heale and Buckley (2015), they may be described as “a “sleeping giant” for healthcare systems, with the potential to be a strong force for increased access to quality health care” (p. 422). In the present day, there is a tendency related to the development of the advanced practice nurse profession worldwide that expresses the industry’s need for qualified specialists on the basis of system complexity and expanded technologies (Heale & Buckley, 2015). However, despite the considerable value of nurse practitioners, a substantial number of them frequently face barriers and limitations to their practice that have a highly negative impact on their ability to provide high-quality optimal health care to the full extent of their skills and knowledge (Heale & Buckley, 2015). Well-elaborated health care policy that includes appropriate guidelines helps advanced practice nurses to identify their role, duties, requirements, ethical standards, and activities for successful health care delivery and the formation of solid relationships with patients and their families.
Advocacy may be regarded as one of the most essential components of nurses’ advanced practice. In general, nursing practice implies the optimization, promotion, and protection of the welfare and patients’ abilities, prevention of injury and disease, alleviation of the patient’s suffering through treatment and health care, and advocacy of individuals and groups. Nurse practitioners advocate for patients through the protection of their rights, dignity, security, education, and caregiving, keep them informed and let them make their own decision concerning the process of treatment and health care. As patients and their relatives are frequently highly confused, embarrassed, anxious, and frightened in medical situations, through advocacy, nurses demonstrate their trust and respect.
The changes in health care policy may be determined by the adoption of transformational leadership in medical organizations. In general, transformational leadership has four fundamental pillars:
- Idealized influence (A leader uses his or her morality and personal characteristics for a positive influence on employees.);
- Intellectual stimulation (A leader consider all ideas and suggestions of his or her employees to stimulate their creativity and productivity);
- Individualized consideration (A leader works with his or her employees in order to understand their needs and increase their job satisfaction.);
- Inspirational motivation (A leader motivates his or her employees to achieve organizational goals.) (Para-González, et al., 2018).
In general, transformational leadership improves employees’ performance and contributes to the successful implementation of innovations in organizations (Para-González, et al., 2018). At the same time, information received by leaders from employees concerning their satisfaction with work may initiate positive changes in health care policy.
Heale, R., & Buckley, C. R. (2015). An international perspective of advanced practice nursing regulation. International Nursing Review, 62, 421–429.
Para-González, L., Jiménez-Jiménez, D., & Martínez-Lorente, A.R. (2018). Exploring the mediating effects between transformational leadership and organizational performance. Employee Relations, 40(2), 412-432.