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Respond to peer and two references and a good length

Peer 1

H.R. 1205 (EH)  – Improving Mental Health Access from the Emergency Department Act of 2021 

Emergency rooms can at times lack knowledge of mental health resources and have difficulty finding placement for those experiencing acute psychiatric issues. In my own experience, patients will often board for days in emergency rooms waiting for placement on a nearby mental health unit, when other options were available or more than adequate at the time to handle the crisis. Finding placement, determining the level of care needed, and providing care for various emergencies that present during a shift is incredibly difficult.  

The Improving Mental Health Access from the Emergency Department Act of 2021 funds emergency departments to assist with creating psychiatric beds for inpatient and emergency settings, assist with transportation to placement, track available beds in their region, and improve psychiatric provider support (House Unanimously Passes, 2021).  

There is a need for this bill, and it is supported by a great deal of evidence. Patients requiring mental health services have recently visited hospitals at an increased rate, required more frequent rehospitalizations, and have an increased length of stay (Nesper et al. 2016). Last month, mental health patients made up eight of the top ten length of stays in the hospital where I am employed. The lack of community resources, placement options, and waiting on county commitment state housing are the main causes of delay. With the loss of state mental health hospitals, many inpatient units have been seeing an increase in cases. There are fewer placement options, and many of these units have decreased the number of available beds due to economic reasons, and emergency departments are forced to pick up the cases (Nordstrom et al., 2019). The addition of this bill will allow some emergency departments to employ mental health providers, transport patients, and monitor beds in their area.  

Post a discussion

3 references and apa format

· Revisit the Congress.gov website provided in the Resources and consider the role of RNs and APRNs in policy-making.

· Reflect on potential opportunities that may exist for RNs and APRNs to participate in the policy-making process.

By Day 3 of Week 8

Post an explanation of at least two opportunities that exist for RNs and APRNs to actively participate in 
policy-making.
 Explain some of the challenges that these opportunities may present and describe how you might overcome these challenges. Finally, recommend two strategies you might make to better advocate for or communicate the existence of these opportunities to participate in policy-making. Be specific and provide examples.

Then respond to two peers with 2 references apa format and respond with good length

Peer 1

RNs and APRNs can actively participate in policy-making by joining nursing organizations. Ferrier (2022) posits that associations can influence lawmakers. I am a member of the American Nurses Association (ANA), which is a group of 3 million nurses who speak out to lawmakers in favor of changing healthcare laws. Meeting with state legislatures is another opportunity to participate actively in policy-making. Ferrier (2022) argues that to advise them and advocate for necessary healthcare reforms, nurses need to establish ties with the local legislators, which significantly impact legislation within the healthcare system. One of the challenges the aforementioned opportunities may present is the issue agenda not being heard. According to Arabi et al. (2019), nurses should ensure they are aware of their agenda and can provide evidence to support it before engaging with a policymaker. The problem will not be heard if one gives in to intimidation or voice fear. Nurses should continue to mobilize and fight for the change they want to see.

By using the media, joining organizations, and advanicng nursing research, nurses can better promote the presence of the opportunities mentioned above (Law, 2018). The public can learn about current healthcare issues and impact what problems are added to the political agenda by involving the media. Williams and Li (2019) posit that it is crucial to research and provide patients with evidence-based therapy because the healthcare industry is constantly evolving. According to the article Making Your Voice Be Heard by Law (2018), nurses can participate in more manageable ways by raising concerns and notifying the public or the healthcare systems when policies are being proposed that will affect nurses.

Peer 2

To influence health policy, nurses and ARPNs must promote public welfare at the three stages: formulation, policy implementation and policy reformation (Hajizadeh, Zamanzadeh, Kakeman, Bahreini, & Khodayari-Zarnag, 2021). There are several ways that nurses and APRNs could actively participate in policymaking. One of the ways that nurses and APRNs could actively participate in policymaking is by being a member of nursing organizations. Nursing organizations gather in chapters/societies to target their influences towards certain issues (Marymount University, 2021). Through these meetings, the organization brings their issues to legislators with the promise that, if the legislators support the nursing organizations bring forth, the legislators will also receive support from the nursing organization that will allow them to keep getting elected in the future.

            Another way that nurses and ARPNs can actively participate in policymaking is by running for local, state, or national government. Becoming an elected official allows for nurses to work within government to push their issues and concerns forward on behalf of the community. An example of this is the Momnibus Act of 2021 which was twelve bills aiming to address long-standing disparities in pregnancy and birth outcomes (Underwood, 2021). Rep. Lauren Underwood, who is also a nurse, worked with the Black Maternal Health Caucus to develop and pass bills that address the outcomes of not only pregnant women, but pregnant African American women as pregnant African American women were four times more likely to die during childbirth (Underwood, 2021).

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