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Analysis of how students learn patient advocacy.

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Dehnke, Lori
Huebscher, Roxana
Aug 2008
Patient advocacy, patient-centered care, nurse-patient relations, nursing school curriculum, nursing study and teaching
ABSTRACT ANALYSIS OF HOW STUDENTS LEARN PATIENT ADVOCACY By Lori Dehnke A descriptive research design was used to explore how students learn the patient advocacy role in the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program at a public college of nursing (CON) in the Midwest. Previous research primarily had focused on defining patient advocacy. The next step is to explore how student nurses learn patient advocacy roles, since nurses are in a pivotal position to provide information and support for patients in the fast-paced health care setting. With Institutional Review Board (IRB) and CON approval, questionnaires were provided to all last-semester BSN senior nursing students to explore student thoughts and methods of how they have learned the patient advocacy role throughout their school career. Areas of focus for the study included: (a) students? definitions of patient advocacy; (b) first experiences with advocacy in nursing; and (c) patient advocacy learning experiences in lecture, clinical lab, clinical areas and their personal lives. Data analysis created an awareness of some ways in which students learn the advocacy role. Themes from student definitions of patient advocacy were: (a) standing up for patient rights and wishes, (b) nursing as a voice, and (c) patients? best interests. Students identified areas of direct nursing care that assisted learning patient advocacy: (a) clinical rotations, (b) working as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) at a hospital or nursing home, and (c) in their personal lives as family or they themselves had exposure and experience in the health care setting. Indirect patient care experiences students identified were: (a) lecture, (b) class discussion in lecture and through case study analysis, (c) skills learning lab, and (d) discussion in clinical with students/instructors.
A clinical paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Nursing, Nurse Educator.
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