The Registered Nurse’s Role in Healthcare Reform

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The RN’s Role in Healthcare Reform Healthcare Reform has been and still is a highly debated controversial political issue in this country. It has been a hot topic of past presidential campaigns, with many proposed solutions, none of which were enacted upon by Congress. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed in 2010. This law or Obamacare, as it is commonly called, was designed to cover the 48 million Americans, including about 1 million in New Jersey who did not have health insurance. It is envisioned to provide seamless, affordable, quality care that is accessible to all. Great emphasis will be placed on transforming our current “sick care” hospital system into a community “health care” system of prevention and health promotion. This paper discusses the evolving and future roles of nurses under the new system. It also examines the proposals of a joint committee made up of members of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), as an initiative to help nurses in their new leadership roles to a healthier nation. According to the Committee’s report, under the new system nurses will be tasked to (i) practice to the full extent of their education and training; (ii) achieve higher levels of education and training; (iii) be full partners with doctors and other health care professionals in redesigning health care in the United States; and (iv) effectively plan workforce policy that require better data collection and the use of
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