This chapter reviews prevention, including genetic counseling. It discusses genetic testing for diagnosis as opposed to screening and the treatment for genetic disease. Methods of prevention begin with education of the public and health care professionals and identification of those at risk. Genetic counseling is the process of helping people understand and adapt to the medical, psychological, and familial implications of genetic contributions to disease. The malignant cells often exhibit aneuploidy as well as translocations that are found only within the tumor cells. Genetic errors that arise from specific cell lines are somatic mutations. It is suggested that there is a thorough collection of family, genetic, and medical history for children entering the adoption process. Nurses may play a variety of roles in genetic counseling that reflect their preparation, area of practice, primary functions, and setting. The chapter explains the incidence of chromosome abnormalities.
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The initial recognition of the need for a genetics referral may arise when a nurse suspects a genetic contribution to disease because of personal or family medical history and/or findings from a physical assessment. Family history is a valuable and cost-effective tool that is often underutilized in clinical practice. Many common genetic conditions result from complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors. It is critical to collect information about potential environmental exposures to help inform a patient’s risk assessment. Health care professionals should become familiar about toxic environmental agents that are common in their specific geographic location. A growing number of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved drugs have labeling that includes pharmacogenomic information, which can be used to optimize drug dosage and prevent adverse and life-threatening drug reactions in a patient or family member.
Nurses working in the field of obstetrics must have a greater depth and breadth of genetic knowledge over any other subspecialty. In gestation, nurses should include education on the effects of teratogens, prenatal screening options, and prenatal diagnoses. After delivery, early recognition of genetic disorders is important for immediate initiation of potentially life-saving therapies. Preconception education is a critical component of health care for women of reproductive age. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that all women of childbearing age consume 0.4 mg of folic acid daily to prevent neural tube defects (NTDs). Counseling can still be useful in terms of optimum pregnancy management in a setting best able to cope with any anticipated problems. Complex and multifaceted maternal and fetal factors influence the consequences of drugs, radiation, and chemical and infectious agents to the developing fetus.
This chapter provides the doctor of nursing practice (DNP)/nurse leader with knowledge of the financial, scheduling, staffing, reporting tools, and leadership commitment required to be successful in the management and retention of their workforce and the delivery of care to the patients. The DNP/nurse leader has ultimate accountability for the cost center budget for labor resources, salary and expense dollars, staff satisfaction, and the delivery of care to the patients on the unit. Accountability and teamwork are crucial to achieving best practices, engagement by frontline staff to improve patient safety and the quality of care. There is no question that nursing care and quality patient care are inseparable. Safe staffing saves lives and a growing body of evidence documents that adequate nurse staffing improves patient outcomes, resulting in shorter lengths of stay, fewer complications, and patient deaths.
Nurses with a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree possess the specific skills needed to address the issues and achieve the goals related to better access, reduced health disparities, balanced quality and cost, improved health literacy, enhanced practice, and sustainability of health care and health care systems. This chapter explains the DNP abilities and proficiencies on financial and business management, applying evidence-based practice (EBPs) to build systems of care, and evaluating outcomes, with specific concentration on grant writing for health care programs. Generally, contemporary operating budgets in the acute hospital, ambulatory, or community settings are based on historic operating expenses and revenues, or increasingly are zero based. This leaves the DNP with little to no margin for increases related to redesigning care delivery models, implementing quality initiatives, initiating performance improvement strategies, or creating new service lines; except, of course, to become leaner.
The learning landscape continues to evolve as new technological tools enable teachers to deliver robust learning experiences. It is important to help teachers, administrators, and students know where to begin so that the transition to virtual learning is smooth, without educational loss. This chapter consists of two sections: current trends and issues in technology integration and technological pedagogical content knowledge. The first section briefly reviews the trends in instructional or educational technologies that are causing administrators, teachers, and students to reflect on and modify their thinking about learning and educational content delivery. The second section explores constructivism, the scientific underpinnings of nursing informatics, and ethics. Nurse educators must also address the ethical challenges brought about by this evolving learning landscape. After reading this chapter, one can understand current trends and issues, as well as the influence of nursing informatics and ways to approach new ethical dilemmas.
Healthcare is in a state of rapid change. Although practice environments have become more complex, educational delivery methods have remained stagnant. Innovative technologies provide opportunities to enhance nursing student learning and help nursing programs become more responsive to changes in the practice environment; however, obstacles may hinder successful implementation. With the increasing complexity of today’s health care environment, innovations in nursing curricula are necessary. This chapter explores some of the general challenges associated with the integration of innovative educational technologies, as well as some challenges unique to virtual simulation. It helps the reader to analyze the challenges of integrating educational technologies into nursing education associated with faculty, administrators, and students. It also helps the reader to examine practical and philosophical barriers related to technology integration and explores challenges unique to the adoption of virtual simulation.
Simulation has many advantages for nursing education, some of which include creating safe learning environments for students and reinforcing information learned in the classroom; it also has the advantage of being available in inclement weather as well as 24 hours a day for student access. Simulation in nursing is one of many methods used for teaching students. Teaching and learning in a virtual learning environment has many advantages for administrators, faculty, and students. One of the advantages includes the use of other disciplines to help create or participate in a virtual world learning experience. The virtual learning environment can be created to look similar to real communities, disaster areas, or homes, with avatars populating that environment. The advantage to using virtual reality, rather than a real-life experience, is that in real life, students could be immersed in an environment that could cause them harm.
To think today that health issues in one country are confined to that country indicates a lack of understanding of disease transmission, cultural practices, and migration patterns at the least. This chapter presents health problem or issues and policies that impact populations around the globe. To highlight the worldwide impact, the content is framed within the seven continents. The health issues are not exclusive but selected to reflect the extent of political or governmental impact. It briefly describes government structures, and presents an overview of the policy-making process of Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, Italy, North America, and South America. The policy process will vary among countries depending on the type of government. Some issues may reflect cultural practices that may not be amenable to government intervention. The reader should determine the extent to which citizens, especially nurses, can be involved in the policy process as advocates and change agents.
This chapter opens with the challenge Nightingale and her close colleagues faced in establishing nursing as a profession when the ethical standards of the existing (secular) nurses were (generally) so low. The ethical issues she had to deal with in her own school, soon after it opened, are discussed three thorny problems with appointments. Anyone reading Nightingale’s writing on nursing will be struck by how often and how forcefully she insisted on high ethical standards. The reason for the emphasis on ethical standards is obvious enough in the task Nightingale faced in raising the new profession from its disreputable past. The International Council on Nursing (ICN) established its Code of Ethics in 1953, again based on Nightingale principles. It identified four responsibilities: to promote health, to prevent illness, to restore health, and to alleviate suffering. The code asks nurses not only to act ethically themselves, but to challenge unethical practices.