When patients visit hospitals for treatment, they’re mainly in a vulnerable state. It falls under the hospital’s jurisdiction to ensure that the patient feels safe and protected at all times. Patient advocacy is amongst the pillars of a robust healthcare system. While the entire healthcare unit has a part to play, nurses take the lead in looking after patients. They ensure that patients are comfortable at every level of their treatment and aware of what’s happening to them. This includes concise communication, informed consent, and caring for the patient’s dignity. The core of a humane healthcare sector falls under patient care and regulation. Since the nurses play a vital role as advocates, studying how they manage to do this is essential. Here is an insight into how and why nurses understand the need for patient advocacy and what is the The Role of Nurses:
- Look After Patients Responsibly
Medical crises are alarming for both the family and the patients. They are a mixture of emotions from anxiety to confusion. Nurses can help calm patients and their families. Their knowledge and skills help them take charge of the situation and ensure that they’re in good hands. Most nurses also go through lucrative training programs that help them understand the importance of culture and ethnicity. So, when they speak to patients, it comes from a place of respect and empathy. In addition, not every case is easy to tackle. However, nurses can handle severe mental health cases, which is possible because of their education. Following their bachelor’s, nurses can leverage online platforms to get the required accreditation to treat patients. For instance, these practitioners might opt for an online MSN-PMHNP degree to tackle mental health cases.
- Help Patients Make Informed Decisions
Patients have a right to know about their health. That means if they need to undergo any treatment, they deserve details. Nurses can never disregard a patient’s decision. If a physician disagrees with the patient’s choice, a nurse can intervene. The bottom line of informed consent is that the patient understands every aspect of their treatment and consent to it. If the patient cannot understand these details, a nurse must clarify every ambiguity.
- Push For Patient Equality
We live in a diverse society with people of different ethnicities, sexual orientations, gender identity, and religions. Every patient deserves quality treatment without any bias. Patients should be allowed to discuss their condition without hiding anything or hesitating. Nurses can make this happen through their communications skills, kindness and the respect they give. They also play a significant role in holding discriminating physicians accountable for any prejudice. If a hospital shows discriminatory behavior to specific communities, nurses are well within their rights to ask for equality.
- Keep The Patient From Suffering
The core of the nursing sector is looking after patients. While some treatments can get painful, a nurse’s job is to make sure it is not too painful. There needs to be trust between the patient and the practitioner. Most patients have a good idea of how much pain they can tolerate. Ignoring their pleas and holding them down goes against caring for them. A nurse should ensure they have studied the patient enough to administer care. They should be careful with the medical apparatus they plan on using and assist physicians in ensuring that the patient is comfortably tested and treated. Assisting physicians can also help keep them calm. The process of caring for a patient in an isolated manner can get stressful. Having a calm and knowledgeable nurse can provide better and more hands-on care.
- Prioritizing Patients
Nurses possess the skills and knowledge to distinguish between the types of patients. Critical patients always get priority in terms of care and ensuring they’re getting treated right away. Through an intricate coding system, nurses make sure no patients get neglected. Depending on their condition, they get wheeled into care. Patients also get priority when their family disagrees over the type of treatment they should get. Suppose a terminally ill patient wants to forego treatment even if the patient’s family is pushing for it. In such cases, nurses will always pick the patient’s decision over the family’s. No external influence gets entertained, and only the patient’s informed consent gets considered.
- Acting As A Resource For Patients
Patients have questions about their health in terms of finances and the treatment itself. Sometimes more than the illness, the cost of the process frightens the patient. Nurses can discuss these issues thoroughly with the patient. They can provide information on hospital benefits to facilitate the payment process and ensure quality care. If the patient wants alternate and more cost-effective options, nurses should listen to the patient. Nurses can also provide information on prescription pills and compare the chemical components. Acting as a resource goes beyond providing information on treatments. Nurses give the patient appropriate details, advise them, and allow them to reach a decision. They also direct the patient by providing comprehensive guides about their disease and related statistics.
Nurses play an essential role as patient advocates. The core of advocacy falls under safeguarding a patient’s interest while providing quality care. For nurses, advocacy is all about looking after patients’ responsibilities and upholding their decisions. It is also the due process through which nurses push for patient equality while ensuring no patient has to suffer through needless pain. On a one-on-one level, nurses also prioritize patients by paying attention to their condition and their choices for themselves. Finally, they act as resources for patients by educating them, helping them, and guiding them. While no part of advocacy is easy, it is essential. The more patients get looked after, the happier they are to get treated.