Nurse practitioners are often key change agents contributing to important transformations in the U.S. healthcare system. Being a nurse means being an advocate for the rights of the patient, other healthcare professionals, and oneself (Marquis & Huston, 2021). The proposed project is concerned with the implementation and evaluation of a harm-reduction program in a local health center. Harm reduction is gaining momentum due to the effectiveness of the approach and associated benefits for the community (Kulikowski & Linder, 2018). The nurse leaders can become the primary advocates for the adoption of this framework in their healthcare facilities (Dubois, 2017). The present harm reduction project involves the collaboration of key stakeholders, so advocacy is instrumental in the successful implementation of the initiative.
The leadership project goals, guiding this program include:
- the creation of the sense of urgency among the healthcare professionals;
- the engagement of the key members of the team;
- the development of a clear and manageable plan with the corresponding timelines;
- the preparation of all the necessary resources (funds, materials, training, and so on);
- the supervision and evaluation of the implementation of the project;
- the internal and external dissemination of the obtained data;
- advocacy for the implementation of the project internally and externally.
Regarding the creation of the multidisciplinary team involved in the implementation of the project, it will require initiating a wide discussion of the program, its potential benefits, and ways to implement the project successfully. The plan of the establishment of a multidisciplinary team will involve the discussion of the stakeholders’ roles and needs associated with the implementation of the project, and development of a plan of meetings and the overall work.
The multidisciplinary team will include the nurse leader, an administrator, a primary care nurse, a community nurse, and a home nurse. The nurse leader will be the leader of the team guiding and monitoring the development and implementation, as well as the evaluation, of the program. The nurse leader will also manage any challenges that may arise in terms of communication, project implementation, resources, and so on. Nurse leader is the major change agent and a key team member regulating the work of the team. The roles of the rest of the team members and the rationale behind the involvement of certain healthcare professionals are presented in Table 1.
Table 1. Multidisciplinary team
|Administrator||– has access to the information; |
– manages resources and funds;
– can contact outside stakeholders (community)
|– provides the necessary information; |
– participates in negotiations with the center’s top management
– contacts community representatives
|Primary care nurse||– is in close contact with patients (potential participants of the program) and their families||– communicates with patients regarding their needs, their willingness to participate in the project |
– communicates with other primary care nurses
|Community nurse||– is in contact with potential participants and their families |
– has some information regarding their immediate needs and perspectives regarding substance use
– is in contact with health-related organizations
|– reaches potential participants and their families discussing their needs and willingness to participate in the project |
– discusses the project with external stakeholders (health-related organizations, non-profits)
– communicates with other community nurses
|Home nurse||– is in contact with potential participants |
– has some valuable insights on potential participants’ views on substance use
|– discusses potential participants’ views on the program and their willingness to be involved |
– communicates with other home nurses
The health center has an effective information system enabling healthcare professionals to communicate effectively. The team will use the internal network to communicate (arrange meetings, share important information instantly, and so on). To start the project, the nurse leader will communicate with an administrator and the head of the health center, who will make the final decision regarding the implementation of the project and provision of the necessary resources.
Dubois, T. M. (2017). Harm reduction. Journal of Addictions Nursing, 28(1), 42-42.
Kulikowski, J., & Linder, E. (2018). Making the case for harm reduction programs for injection drug users. Nursing, 48(6), 46-51.
Marquis, B. L., & Huston, C. J. (2021). Leadership roles and management functions in nursing: Theory and application. Wolters Kluwer, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.