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Challenges And Responses To Geriatric Nursing

1771 words - 8 pages

Challenges and Responses to Improving Geriatric Nursing Care
Lisa Watson
University of Massachusetts Boston
Professional Issues in Nursing
NU: 360
Dr. JoAnn Mulready-Shick
September 29, 2012
Abstract

Challenges occur in nursing practice that impede the ability of the nursing profession to improve the care provide by nurses to our growing older population. This paper will describe some of the challenges nursing is facing and how to make the changes needed to improve the field of nursing. The research will show that investing in future education of nurses is the base that change will be built upon.
Will you or a loved one fall into the geriatric population that is expected to ...view middle of the document...

In addition, the research presented will show how imperative it is for future nursing education to incorporate in depth geriatric care for new nurses that include current research on evidence-based protocol and nursing best-practices.
Nursing schools must excite nurses to pursue advanced degrees in research. The future of nursing must use research to obtain accurate information and the knowledge on how to incorporate these as Best Practices (BPI) and evidence-based protocol (EBP) to advance nursing and gain the respect of the healthcare settings nurses are working in. (Harvath et al., 2006, p. 213) claimed that “Best Practice Initiatives (BPI) generate interest and excitement in undergrad and graduate students who might not understand how research can make a difference in the lives of older adults.” BPI and evidence-based initiatives must have on going updates as practices change to ensure cohesive nursing practice. This must be seen as important to all nurses to allow for a cohesive practice within all nursing environments. “Engaging students in research experiences provides opportunities to cultivate gerontological scholars and leaders who will then serve to mentor future generations” (Shellman, 2012). A program researched at University of Massachusetts Lowell came about when master’s level nursing students collaborated on a research study called “The STARR program” (Shellman, 2012). “The primary aim of STARR is to provide hands-on research experiences for undergraduate and graduate students (Shellman, 2012).
Current working nurses must update their nursing practice on a constant basis. Nursing practice is evolving and changing in the ways that we care for our patients. Elderly are living longer due to health advances and healthy life styles. We must take the knowledge that we gain in nursing research to improve care. The knowledge to improve care must be in an easily understood style and be easy to implement in individual nurse’s practice (Harvath et al., 2006, p. 214). Support should be provided as the new knowledge become available during the nurse’s work day or scheduled workshops. According to (Harvath et al., 2006, p. 212), “it is essential that schools of nursing help undergraduate and advanced practice nursing students {to} develop an appreciation for how research and education can improve the care of older adults.” Elder care can be improved by using Best Practice Initiatives (BPI) and evidence-based interventions. As the nursing industry identifies the best ways to care for elderly, this must be shared with current practicing nurses.
Geriatric population must be given the tools to guide there own care. In the past, healthcare would treat people who were sick as it happened. Healthcare is trying to teach patients including the elderly, knowledge on how to prevent illness before it occurs. Healthcare is “changing from an illness to a wellness perspective . . .” (Grossman & Valiga, 2009, p. 146)....

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