Nurses have more responsibility than ever today as doctors move into profiteering-specialized roles which fewer and fewer Americans have the money to access. This has led to legislation which empowers nurses, but shifts responsibilities to them that were once doctors without a corresponding increase in pay. The Ultius freelance nursing writer who composed this model research paper stresses that while nursing associations have had a prominent role in shaping this legislation, the bottom line is that the profit motivation corrupts every effort at quality health care in America. This sample nursing research paper emphasizes that the only way of truly empowering health care providers to support the health of Americans is to remove the profit motivation associated with a single payer health care system.
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Legislative efforts to help nurses better care for patients
President Obama’s Affordable Care Act did nothing to address the corruption of the profit motivation. While it closed the gap in Medicare Part D, and got rid of pre-existing conditions excluding those most needing care, it simply required people to get insurance which does not relate to quality care (American Nurses Association). In order to cover for the absence of general practicing doctors, the Registered Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2013 (H.R. 1821) has been proposed. This measure meets the knowledge that the more nurses the better the quality of care, reduced instances of patient’s falling, infections, medication and various errors, and patient death. American Nursing Association president Karen A. Daley comments,
Nurse staffing has a direct impact on patient safety. We know that when there are appropriate nurse staffing levels, patient outcomes improve. Determining the appropriate number and mix of nursing staff is critical to the delivery of quality patient care. Federal legislation is necessary to increase protections for patients and ensure fair working conditions for nurses. (Jones and Sachs)
However, since the profit motivation influences what laws are passed, and profit is more important to the industry than patient safety, the bill was quashed by representatives who could afford private nurses.
A nurse’s burden to better patient care
Nurses have been forced to take on more responsibility not only because doctors are absent, but because for-profit hospitals have cut down on staff to increase profits while running at capacity. Fighting burnout and compassion fatigue in nurses is just the tip of the iceberg. The marks of the unlimited expansion capitalism model corrupt every aspect of this and every industry in America.
The Role of a Nurse in 2016 Source: RWJF.org
Without any appreciable raise in income for their new requirements, the nurse’s role has changed.
“Nurses today are playing new roles in coordinating care from multiple providers, managing caseloads of patients with intense care needs, and helping patients transition out of hospitals and into the home or other settings. They are working as health coaches and in other ways to prevent illness and promote wellness. And they are charting new paths in emerging fields like telehealth, informatics, and genetics and genomics, and as scientists and leaders in society.”
Legislation for better care for patients and preventing nursing burnout
Most nurses got into the industry out of a desire to help people, but are being ground up and exhausted by the profiteering in the system. Nurse Burnout is one of the most common topics requested by nurses and doctors who are ordering nursing papers from Ultius for professional reference. The needless cruelly, and manipulation of the sick are causing higher rates of burnout for quality nurses. Profiteers are framing this extortion as “expanded roles to improve access to quality care and to lower costs” but the reality is that nurses are being extorted and overworked to “expand profits and improve access to quality profits for providers” (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation). It does not take nurses long to realize this, and for their altruistic motivations to be the noose which tightens around their own necks. This has led many nursing associations to begin advocating to remove the profit motivation from health care. As a recent nursingworld.org article entitled, “Patient Advocacy in the Community and Legislative Arena” emphasizes,
Registered nurses can impact public policy through advocacy from a unique vantage point. Clinical experiences provide real-life examples illustrating the needs of patients and the outcomes of public policy on patient morbidity and mortality. Nurses should not underestimate their ability to influence access to appropriate, efficient, and effective quality care. They are in excellent positions to share with various constituencies the importance of appropriate healthcare services available to all United States (U.S.) citizens and residents. (Maryland and Gonzalez)
Those in a position to have their voices heard must begin and not quit making a stink about the corruption at the core of the health care industry-profiting off of sickness and not wellness. From nursing students suffering from Burnout Syndrome to Capitol Hill, until this message can no longer be ignored, corporations will continue to show record profits while the average citizen’s quality of life declines.
The best choice for better patient care: Single-payer national health insurance
One of the misrepresentations of single-payer universal health care – a model that many other developed nations successfully employ – is that of rationed care. However, the current American model of for-profit health care rations care for only those who can afford to pay for it. Katy Roemer, an RN rep leader in the Kaiser Permanente system emphasizes,
Currently, the Kaiser model of care is becoming one of denying care…That way they can pocket more of the premiums. When you subject healthcare to the business model, this is where you’re going to end up. As nurses, we’re here to take care of patients. Anything that gets in the way of us being able to take care of our patients, we are going to fight. (National Nurse Magazine)
This reality is even more bitter when taking reinsurance into account, which the majority of Americans do not know exists. Reinsurance is the insurance industry which insures the insures. Just as individuals pay premiums on their health care insurance plans, the insurance company pays their premiums to insure their risk with the reinsurance companies.
Nursing Legislation, Better Patient Care and Profit Motivation
The profit motive corrupts every aspect of health care in America and results in a plethora of problems.
|The Pitfalls of Profit Motivation and Better Patient Care|
|Bottom line: The insurance companies never lose, but the American people do through lack of preventive care which single payer emphasizes since it is the most cost effective method of care.|
Big, BIG Pharma
Overall lack of quality of life in America resulting for lack of preventative care such as regular checkups, which inhibits the ability to catch things early when they are treatable/curable. Which often forces people onto extreme cycles of prescriptions drugs, making those companies some of the most profitable in the world.
Disempowering the Public
General fear mongering, and lack of real health and body education to keep the public entranced to the idea of the doctor being the only source of safe knowledge, thus disempowering more affordable and less drastic holistic methods which have worked for thousands of years.
Nurses understand every element of this corruption, working with it every day, but are hemmed-in by the system and unable to treat patients in ways which would empower sustained health and promote the ethics of nursing. In a single-payer system the government would be the payer, paying for all health care costs, which are fed from the coffers of taxes. Currently in legislative action this year,
The United States National Health Care Act (USNHC) establishes a unique American universal health insurance program with single payer financing. The bill would create a publicly financed, privately delivered health care system that improves and expands the already existing Medicare program to all U.S. residents, and all residents living in U.S. territories. The goal of the legislation is to ensure that all Americans will have access, guaranteed by law, to the highest quality and most cost effective health care services regardless of their employment, income or health care status. In short, health care becomes a human right…This program will cover all medically necessary services, including primary care, inpatient care, outpatient care, emergency care, prescription drugs, durable medical equipment, hearing services, long term care, palliative care, pediatric care, mental health services, dentistry, eye care, chiropractic, and substance abuse treatment. Patients have their choice of physicians, providers, hospitals, clinics, and practices. There are no co-pays or deductibles under this act. (Heath care-Now)
Also, a major corruption of the current for-profit health care system is the magnitude of paperwork. A recent Forbes article on how the profit motive is ruining American health care depicts an example of this through the lens of unlimited expansion capitalism is that in 1970 one doctor would have one assistant to do the paperwork and billing for their practice. However, with the amount of paperwork and rigmarole the insurance companies put doctors through a single doctor requires an average of twelve assistants to do paperwork (Ubel).
Removing the profit motivation from heath care is the only way that nurses and doctors can be empowered to treat patients better. This system would allow for all citizens to have their needs met, resulting in a higher quality of life, more productive public, and more effective and affordable care. This system would drastically reduce the fear, stress, and uncertainty which is a major aspect of health care in the U.S., and no one would ever go into bankruptcy or lose their home due to one illness. This is not a pipe dream as the propaganda machine would have American’s believe, it is how every other developed nation keep health care costs from bankrupting the entire nation.
American Nurses Association. “Health care reform.” ANA, n.d. Retrieved from: http://www.nursingworld.org/healthcarereform
Heath care-Now. “Expanded & Improved Medicare For All Act, H.R. 676.” Heathcare-now.org, 7 June 2016. Retrieved from: https://www.healthcare-now.org/legislation/hr-676/
Jones, Jemarion, and Adam Sachs. “Registered nurse safe staffing bill introduced in congress.” American Nurse Association, n.d. Retrieved from: http://www.nursingworld.org/FunctionalMenuCategories/MediaResources/PressReleases/2014-PR/RN-Safe-Staffing-Bill-Introduced-in-Senate.pdf
Maryland, Mary A., and Rose Iris Gonzalez. “Patient Advocacy in the Community and Legislative Arena.” The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 17(2012). Retrieved from: http://www.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/Vol-17-2012/No1-Jan-2012/Advocacy-in-Community-and-Legislative-Arena.html
National Nurse Magazine. “TROUBLE ON THE HORIZON: Top five things nurses must know about where healthcare is heading.” Nationalnursesunited.org, 21 Mar. 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.nationalnursesunited.org/blog/entry/trouble-on-the-horizon-top-five-things-nurses-must-know-about-where-healthc/
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “Nurses Take on New and Expanded Roles in Health Care.” Rwjf.org, 20 Jan. 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.rwjf.org/en/library/articles-and-news/2015/01/nurses-take-on-new-and-expanded-roles-in-health-care.html
Ubel, Peter. “Is the profit motive ruining American health care.” Pharma & Healthcare. Forbes, 12 Feb. 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterubel/2014/02/12/is-the-profit-motive-ruining-american-healthcare/#258f4e36a0ce