Role of nurses as advocates beyond the bedside

Nurses have a moral obligation to serve as patient advocates beyond the bedside. Patient advocacy is an important part of a nurse’s role in providing quality healthcare and advocating for their patients’ best interests. Advocacy can take on many forms, from direct interactions with individual patients or families, to participation in policy decisions or political actions at a systemic level (Hess & Leininger, 2018). Nurses can be powerful advocates due to their education, experience and commitment to improving the lives of their patients. In this paper I will discuss the various roles nurses play as patient advocates both within and outside of the clinical setting.

Role of nurses as advocates beyond the bedside

First and foremost, nurses act as patient advocates by ensuring that each patient receives compassionate care that meets their unique needs (Meehling et al., 2016). Nurses should strive to provide holistic care that takes into account not only physical but also social, emotional and spiritual needs (Kovner et al., 2015). This requires understanding how cultural factors may influence a patient’s perspective on health beliefs and treatment options (Estabrooks & Murrell-Lambie, 2019). Further, when providing education about medical treatments or preventive care such as vaccinations it is important for nurses to do so in an unbiased manner while developing trusting relationships with patients (Rodrigues-Vasconcelos et al., 2017).

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