The promotion of wellness is one of the most rewarding aspects of a career in nursing as it can create a positive and lasting impact on local communities and the health of patients. There are several ways nurses can promote wellness as part of their day-to-day roles, including education and advocacy.
The role of health promotion is vitally important as it can give people the knowledge and tools to prevent illness and ease long-term conditions such as diabetes and asthma. This improves patients’ outcomes and reduces the strain on healthcare services.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines the promotion of wellness as the “process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve their health.” It is an ambitious but vital objective, and as a nurse, you will have the privilege of changing people’s lives by achieving it.
The first strategy nurses can deploy to promote wellness is communicating with patients directly. As part of your job responsibilities, you will have to assess patients, work with physicians to create treatment plans and then deliver care and assistance to patients. Each of these tasks will give you the opportunity to talk with patients, impart advice and encourage them to improve their diet and exercise routines.
Key to promoting wellness correctly is taking into account the social, cultural, spiritual, economic and environmental factors that make each patient unique. This will enable you to deliver bespoke advice. You can also help here by ensuring the patient undergoes regular screening and tests for certain illnesses.
Nurses can also teach patients in groups via educational and learning sessions. This can be very effective for improving the health outcomes of local communities, as sessions can be targeted at different groups and demographics. For example, less affluent areas may benefit from lessons about the benefits of physical activity and eating correctly, which can combat a rise in diabetes. Educating others is one of the most rewarding aspects of nursing.
You can boost your own career prospects and gain additional skills to promote wellness by completing a hybrid ABSN program at a leading institution like the University of Indianapolis. Earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing will enable you to apply for new roles in nursing and become an advanced health advocate. Many of these programs can be completed online so you will not have to disrupt your professional life.
Advocating for policy changes to promote wellness can bring about real and lasting change in the world. Advocacy often involves campaigning for better conditions and outcomes for patients. Advocacy can also be on a smaller scale in hospitals and other healthcare settings. A study shows that when nurses advocate, or educate patients about risks, resources and treatment options, infection rates are lower. Promoting wellness benefits everyone involved — patients, nurses and healthcare systems.
Nurses can advocate for patients by speaking up for them, communicating with them, empathizing with their beliefs and needs, and keeping them informed about the decisions made about their health and treatment. This inclusive, holistic approach to healthcare is the best way to promote wellness as a nurse.