Advocating for the Nursing Role in Program Design and Implementation

Advocating for the Nursing Role in Program Design and Implementation

Program Design and Implementation

Nurses play a critical role in the promotion of equity in healthcare. They explore interventions that can be implemented to address disparities in access to and utilization of the available healthcare services. Nurses also lead the implementation of health programs that address the critical and potential health needs of the diverse populations. Therefore, this paper is an exploration of a healthcare program in my area of practice from an interview that was conducted.

Question: Tell us about a healthcare program, within your practice. What are the costs and projected outcomes of this program?

Answer: A healthcare program within my practice is the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program. Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program is an initiative that Robert Ostfeld and Lauren Grat developed to improve the health and wellbeing of patients with heart disease. The program advocates the utilization of lifestyle and behavioral interventions to reverse and prevent the development of heart disease. The primary interventions that are utilized in the program include plant-based and whole-food diet to reverse and prevent cardiovascular disorders. The participants are encouraged to embrace diets that are free from animal products. The diets comprise of whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. The effectiveness of this program is that it facilitates weight loss as well as prevention of cardiovascular conditions and risk factors such as obesity, hypertension, and arteriosclerosis (Montefiore, n.d.). The costs of the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program are not provided. However, some of the projected outcomes that I know about the program include the reduction in the risk of disease progression in patients with heart disease and prevention of cardiovascular disorders in the overall population.

Question: Who is your target population?

Answer: The target population for Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program is mainly on individuals who have been diagnosed with cardiovascular problems such as heart disease. It also comprises of individuals who are at a high risk of developing cardiovascular health problems. Any other person that is interested in living a healthy lifestyle can also benefit from the program (Montefiore, n.d.).

Question: What is the role of the nurse in providing input for the design of this healthcare program? Can you provide examples?

Answer: I believe that nurses play critical roles in providing inputs on the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program. Firstly, nurses can assist in the development of appropriate interventions for obtaining participants for the program. For example, nurses can provide input on the use of interventions such as health educational campaigns to create awareness among the population on the existence of the program. Nurses can also assist in developing the goals that must be achieved by the program. I have learned from my experience that goal development entails ensuring that the program addresses the critical needs of the target population. An example of the ways in which nurses can assist in goal development is ensuring that the goals align with the outcomes of the program. The other example is nurses comparing the proposed interventions with the objectives to determine any need for a revision or change in strategies or objectives. Nurses also ensure that the needs of the target populations are prioritized in the design of the healthcare program. Nurses utilize information from needs assessment to determine the actual needs of the target populations and the ways in which they can be addressed in the program. Lastly, nurses provide inputs on the resources needed for the successful design and implementation of the program. For instance, they provide information about materials and human resources that are required for the successful implementation of the program (Fulton & Holly, 2021). Therefore, nurses are critical in the design of the program.

Question: What is your role as an advocate for your target population for this healthcare program? Do you have input into design decisions? How else do you impact design?

I play a number of roles as an advocate for the target populations in the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program. One of the roles is health education. I provide the populations with and at risk of heart attack health education on the importance of the program in promoting their health and wellbeing. I also educate them about the benefits of lifestyle and behavioral change to minimize cardiovascular risks. My other role as an advocate entails ensuring the protection of the rights of those with and at risk of cardiovascular health problems. I ensure that the right of the target population to safe, high quality and efficient care is protected. I also ensure that barriers to care for the population are addressed. I also play the role of linking them with the available resources in the community. I explore the available resources such as social support groups for people with cardiovascular problems to ensure that they cope with their health problems. I have input in the design decisions. I provide my inputs on the resources, goals, objectives and strategies that are needed to address the needs of those with cardiovascular problems (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2019).

Question: What is the role of the nurse in healthcare program implementation? How does this role vary between design and implementation of healthcare programs? Can you provide examples?

Answers: I believe that nurses play several roles in the implementation of healthcare programs. One of the roles is the actual implementation of the program. Nurses work with other program stakeholders in implementing program interventions. Nurses also manage change. They ensure that interventions such as active stakeholder participation are utilized to manage resistance to change (Banerjee et al., 2017). Nurses also act as mentors and supervisors in the implementation process. They provide the adopters of a program with the needed guidance for the successful implementation of a program. The roles of nurses in program design vary from those of implementation. The design phase entails the development of strategies, resources and objectives of the program. The implementation phase entails the use of resources to achieve the project objectives (Beeber et al., 2019). An example is the use of resources such as skilled workforce from the design phase in the implementation phase to achieve project outcomes.

Question: Who are the members of a healthcare team that you believe are most needed to implement a program? Can you explain why?

Answer: The healthcare team that is needed to implement the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program includes community nurses and dieticians. The team members such as community nurses will recruit participants for the program while dieticians assist in dietary education to the target audience.


In summary, the Montefiore Einstein Cardiac Wellness Program is an effective program that contributes to the health and wellbeing of patients with cardiovascular problems. Nurses can play critical roles in the design and implementation of the program. The successful implementation of the program may require inputs from additional healthcare stakeholders. Therefore, nurses should explore the different ways in which they can play a proactive role in program design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation.




Banerjee, S. C., Manna, R., Coyle, N., Penn, S., Gallegos, T. E., Zaider, T., Krueger, C. A., Bialer, P. A., Bylund, C. L., & Parker, P. A. (2017). The implementation and evaluation of a communication skills training program for oncology nurses. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 7(3), 615–623.

Beeber, A. S., Palmer, C., Waldrop, J., Lynn, M. R., & Jones, C. B. (2019). The role of Doctor of Nursing Practice-prepared nurses in practice settings. Nursing Outlook, 67(4), 354–364.

Fulton, J. S., & Holly, V. W. (2021). Clinical Nurse Specialist Role and Practice: An International Perspective. Springer Nature.

Montefiore. (n.d.). Cardiac Wellness Program—New York—Montefiore Medical Center. Retrieved July 10, 2021, from

Stanhope, M., & Lancaster, J. (2019). Public Health Nursing E-Book: Population-Centered Health Care in the Community. Elsevier Health Sciences.

Chances to Partake in Policy Assessment

The policy review process begins with planning, in which relevant stakeholders meet to ascertain their enthusiasm and buy-in for the suggested policy’s advancement. To engage in the evaluation or review process, APRNs and RNs must work in positions that enable them to engage with institutional stakeholders and participate in analytical policymaking (Shiramizu et al., 2016). During the planning and implementation phases of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), skilled nurse practitioners, for example, were urged to take part in the review process, fight for pricing accountability, and advocate for patient education on involvement in subsidized health insurance plans (Milstead & Short, 2019). The majority of this was accomplished through professional nursing or APRN groups. As a result, APRNs and RNs can participate in policy evaluation as representatives of and collaborators with health societies such as the American Nurses Association. Thus, nurses can provide ACA-related reports to legislators and the general public through these agencies.

Challenges Rising from the Opportunities and Ways to Overcome them.

Nursing is a revered and trusted profession; nevertheless, it entails various challenges that RNs/APRNs may face during policy review. Nurses may find it difficult to collaborate with other specialists and lawmakers from different backgrounds with contrary views. They may be less open to nurse-proposed resolutions solely because their perspectives on patients and healthcare systems differ. For instance, considering the public’s perception of nursing as a profession, some people admire and respect nurses’ work, while others, unfortunately, hold opposing views. Thus, according to Williams & Anderson (2018), to overcome such challenges and opposition, nurses must preserve, gather enough support from coworkers and the public, and continue to do what is suitable according to evidence-based practice.

Tactics to Support the Existence of these Opportunities

Attending national and local nursing gatherings or seminars will be one way to draw attention to APRNs and RNs’ chances for policy review. It will provide a platform to discuss how vital policy review is for policy formulation. As a result, informing other nurses about the news will help raise awareness of the choices available to the nursing field. Also, one can increase awareness by sharing data via social media. Consequently, making others aware of changes by publishing a discussion post on social media networks, particularly those where nurses interact and share ideas.