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Nursing Advocacy in a Transforming Healthcare Landscape: The Role in COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates, Telemedicine, and Prescription Drug Pricing
The role of nurses in the COVID-19 vaccination mandate, telemedicine, and prescription drug pricing is pivotal in advocating for and ensuring a more efficient and patient-centered healthcare system. First and foremost, nurses have played an indispensable role in the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Their contribution to the vaccination efforts has been monumental. Nurses have not only administered vaccines but also served as the face of hope and comfort to countless individuals receiving the vaccine. Their compassionate and humanistic approach has helped alleviate vaccine hesitancy and fear, ensuring that a larger segment of the population gets vaccinated. Beyond the actual vaccination process, nurses have been at the forefront of patient education, conducting interviews to gather crucial health information and explaining the importance of immunization. Their meticulous monitoring of patients for adverse reactions has been essential in maintaining the safety of the vaccination process. In essence, nurses have been the linchpins of prevention during this pandemic, working tirelessly to protect public health (Pérez, 2021).
Telemedicine, another significant development in healthcare, has been further accelerated by the pandemic. Nurses have been instrumental in the adoption and effective implementation of telemedicine services. Through telehealth platforms, nurses have been able to provide care remotely, ensuring that patients continue to receive vital medical attention while minimizing the risk of virus transmission. This has been especially crucial for individuals with chronic conditions who require regular check-ups and monitoring. Nurses have not only conducted virtual consultations but have also played a vital role in educating patients on how to use telemedicine effectively. They have bridged the gap between technology and healthcare, making it more accessible and user-friendly for patients, ultimately saving them time, money, and, most importantly, lives.
On the front of prescription drug pricing, nurses have also been advocates for patients. The pandemic disrupted global supply chains, leading to fluctuations in the prices of essential medications, particularly for individuals with non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Nurses, as patient advocates, have been vocal in highlighting the challenges patients face due to rising drug costs. They have played a crucial role in bringing attention to this issue at both the individual patient level and within healthcare organizations. Nurses have been at the forefront of working with healthcare providers to explore cost-effective alternatives and to ensure that patients continue to have access to the medications they need. Their advocacy extends to policy discussions, pushing for reforms in drug pricing that would prioritize patient affordability and well-being (OPS, 2023).
Nursing Advocacy in a Transforming Healthcare Landscape