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Nurses as Leaders in Health Care Reform Essay

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Updated: Oct 25th, 2020


It can be argued that the personal and professional characteristics of nurses play a prominent role in the leadership of healthcare organizations. Recent research by Daly, Jackson, Mannix, Davidson, and Hutchinson (2014) shows that many nurses have a significant influence on policy and decision making in health care. Due to this reason I chose ‘Identification of the Influence of Nursing on Important Health Care Decisions at all Levels’ as a research priority. The paper will highlight the benefits and challenges of the above research priority while giving a summary of articles related to it.

Benefits and Challenges of the Research Priority

It is vital to identify personal and professional characteristics that can ensure effective clinical leadership. Indeed, it can be stated that a high-quality health care system will be established as a result of active clinical leadership (Daly et al., 2014). After all, it is a key element of health service performance. Recent research done in France shows that pegging policy making, decision making, and everyday leadership of a health facility performed by doctors only has led to poor management of the said facilities (Hutchinson & Jackson, 2014).

It is also important to note that for any medical personnel to succeed in leadership, he/she must possess unique characteristics both in their profession and personal life. Nicol, Mohanna, and Cowpe (2014) go further and explain that such unique characteristics are also used to determine the ethical behavior of a leader. Clinical leadership leads to high-quality patient outcomes while poor clinical leadership leads to many difficulties experienced in the workplace. At the same time, poor quality outcomes affect the general quality of life of both the patients and the staff of the hospital or health facility.

Current Articles on the Research Priority Chosen

Daly et al. (2014) point out that effective leadership can affect hospital performance and make it more efficient. The authors emphasize the importance of organizational citizenship behavior and their relation to job satisfaction and improved productivity (Daly et al., 2014). However, some barriers such as a lack of confidence, cynicism, and poor communication prevent leadership from being effective. Ennis, Happell, and Reid-Searl (2015) recommend the full inclusion of all stakeholders in the proper management of a health facility. Such features as professionalism and honesty are reported to help younger professionals develop with the help of nursing leaders.

Both modeling and clinical teaching were advised as effective means of junior staff development. Nicol et al. (2014) emphasize the importance of personal skills such as high emotional intelligence and the patient-centered focus as crucial for both nursing leaders and doctors. It is also stressed in the article that the egocentric agenda that is present in the modern understanding of clinical leadership should be avoided.

Future Research

Future research in this area could help both students and nursing professionals understand how personal features affect the delivery of their care, their effectiveness, and the ability to become or remain perfect leaders. Knickman and Kovner (2015) emphasize the importance of healthcare institutions and their influence on nursing individuals, while the Institute of Medicine (US) (2010) points out that any innovation should respond to a need. Thus, if nursing researchers continue to study the influence of personality traits on the effectiveness of care, the results of these studies might be adjusted to hospital policies in the future, thus transforming and improving nursing care.


In conclusion, clinical leadership is associated with excellent hospital performance as it is associated with a variety of hospital tasks such as decision-making and stock management. The fact that nurses are the link between the patent and the healthcare facility demonstrates how significant their influence is in the healthcare system. Training on clinical leadership expertise among nurses and other health specialists is of great importance.


Daly, J., Jackson, D., Mannix, J., Davidson, P. M., & Hutchinson, M. (2014). The importance of clinical leadership in the hospital setting. Journal of Health Care Leadership, 6, 75-83.

Ennis, G., Happell, B., & Reid-Searl, K. (2015). Enabling professional development in mental health nursing: The role of clinical leadership. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 22(8), 616-622.

Hutchinson, M., & Jackson, D. (2014). Troubling fragments and small stories: An analysis of public commentary on nursing through a web blog. Collegian, 21(2), 81-8.

Institute of Medicine (US). (2010). The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

Knickman, J. R., & Kovner, A. R. (Eds.). (2015). Health care delivery in the United States (11th ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing.

Nicol, E. D., Mohanna, K., Cowpe, J. (2014). Perspectives on clinical leadership: A qualitative study exploring the views of senior healthcare leaders in the UK. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 107(7), 277-286.

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