Write a letter to the editor of a scholarly journal. The length and format of the letter is dictated by your choice of journal.

Introduction

Note: Each assessment in this course builds on the work you completed in the previous assessment. Therefore, you must complete the assessments in this course in the order in which they are presented.

Advocating for new policies is an important aspect of the master’s-prepared nurse. For new policies to be compelling they need to be supported by evidence. Supporting data can be used to illustrate why new policies and interventions are needed to help address a specific health issue. Compelling data can help sway the stakeholders and gain support for your policy.

Another aspect of advocacy is disseminating new policies and interventions outside of the immediate care environment. This can be done by reaching out to professional organizations as well as academic and professional journals. A letter to the editor is one strategy for disseminating information to a wider audience and to potentially enlist support throughout the wider professional community.

Professional Context

Nurses have the opportunity to use their skills and develop programs to keep individuals and communities healthy. Health is complex, however, and the nurse needs to possess strong advocacy skills to successfully support a cause or interest. The American Nurses Association’s (2015) code of ethics describes the responsibility of a nurse to include working through and with appropriate stakeholders to advocate for the health of people in and out of the work environment. To be an effective advocate, there are several important abilities a nurse must possess, including problem-solving, communication, and influencing others. One way a nurse can advocate to a broader population is through effective letter writing, both to legislators and through the media, such as with editorials and research articles.

Reference

American Nurses Association. (2015). Code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements. http://www.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/EthicsStandards/CodeofEthicsforNurses/Code-of-Ethics-For-Nurses.html

Scenario

Throughout this course, you have focused on a specific health issue occurring within a specific population. You researched position papers regarding this health concern, and you developed a health policy proposal to positively impact the health of the affected individuals. It is now time to reach a greater audience regarding your policy proposal.

You are going to write a letter to the editor of a peer-reviewed nursing journal. Choose from one of the journals in the Ultimate List of Nursing Journals and go to the journal’s Web site to find out the requirements for submitting an editorial, such as format requirements, topics, and word counts. Make sure you select a nursing journal that covers the topic about which you are going to write. If you want to use another journal that is not on this list, please make sure the journal does address health care, because this is the purpose of the assessment.

Instructions

For this assessment, you will write a letter to the editor of a scholarly journal. Your goal is to be informative about the policy that you developed for your previous Biopsychosocial Population Health Policy Proposal assessment, while also being persuasive about the need for and benefit of similar policies in other health care settings. The bullet points below correspond to the grading criteria in the scoring guide. Be sure that your assessment submission addresses all of them. You may also want to read the Letter to the Editor: Population Health Policy Advocacy Scoring Guide and Guiding Questions: Letter to the Editor: Population Health Policy Advocacy [DOC] to better understand how each grading criterion will be assessed.

Example assessment: You may use the Assessment 3 Example [PDF] to give you an idea of what a Proficient or higher rating on the scoring guide would look like.

Submission Requirements

The submission requirements for your editorial will depend on the journal you choose. To find out the requirements, go to the journal’s Web site. There should be a section regarding submissions that will address how to format letters to the editor, and whether there is a word count limit (there usually is a limit).

Competencies Measured

By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and scoring guide criteria:

 

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