It is important for nurses to reflect on experiences and new knowledge gained in order to promote professional growth.
- Analyze the increased complexity of care among older adults.
- Compare care models for nursing practice specific to the older adult.
- Design plans for care specific to the older adult.
- Identify local, state, and national resources which facilitate safe and effective transitions of care for older adults.
- Incorporate professional values, attitudes, and expectations regarding ageism when caring for older adults.
- Outline the importance of advocating for older adults in the management of their care.
- Information Literacy: Discovering information reflectively, understanding how information is produced and valued, and using the information to create new knowledge and participate ethically in communities of learning.
Reflect on your development as a nursing professional and address the following in a 1-2 page paper:
- Describe how you achieved each of the course competencies and the transferable skills.
- Provide at least one example of new knowledge gained related to each competency and explain how this new knowledge will impact your nursing practice.
Key Concepts: Nursing Care of the Older Adult Client
Current trends and issues in healthcare are shaping care provisions for the aging population. Demographics, social, economic, and political factors, related to the older adult client’s health, greatly impact the nursing profession. Nurses must have a holistic understanding of aging theories including biological, sociological, and psychological factors relevant to the aging process. Nurses must be skilled in assessment and interventional methods to safely provide care to older adults with various co-morbidities and health issues across care settings.
Various certifications and higher degree attainment, with specializations in gerontological nursing, are more relevant than ever before. The American Nurses Association Gerontological Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice guides nursing care provisions to ensure older adults have unique interventions and receive highly specialized, quality, and safe care.
Maintaining quality health, independence and function are focus areas of older adult clients. Geriatric care models have been created to offset healthcare costs associated with the overutilization of health services among older adults. Primary, secondary, and tertiary disease prevention and management are critical factors in reducing constraints on the healthcare system.
Nurses serve many roles when caring for older adult clients including that of being a case manager to ensure safe care coordination and transition of care. Various community resources and services are available to help support older adults and their family’s health goals as they transition through various care settings.
Ageism continues to be a major concern in the care of older adults. Ageism greatly affects the quality and safety of care provisions. One must be aware of his or her own attitudes, stereotypes, and biases about ageism in caring for older adults. Care provisions of older adult clients require healthcare providers to have knowledge about legal and ethical standards when caring for older adults.
- Reflect on the Past to Improve the Future
Appropriate learning involves not just the ingestion of material, but also a reflection on what has been learned. Current research in nursing education and nursing practice highlights the importance of engaging in thinking practices that promote reflective thinking. This type of thinking draws on personal and professional experiences, feelings, and emotions, explores personal growth, allows time for critical reflection on knowledge and experience, and increases self-understanding (Freed & Dorcas, 2013). It involves reflecting on our experiences and what we have learned with the intent of drawing insights to improve ourselves or our practice.
It is a good idea to make reflection a part of our everyday nursing practice because it makes us more mindful of the ways we think, feels, and respond to situations. As nurses, we should constantly be evaluating our actions, behaviors, responses, and decisions in practice (Jacobs, 2016).