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Explore the Relationships between Nursing, Health and the Policy Process Due Date Explore the Relationships between Nursing, Health and the Policy Process Introduction to the case This paper presents the case of a patient representing a diagnosis…
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Explore the Relationships between Nursing, Health and the Policy Process Due Explore the Relationships between Nursing, Health and the Policy Process Introduction to the case This paper presents the case of a patient representing a diagnosis. It deals with the case of bipolar disorder which is a mental illness disorder. Bipolar disorder, also referred to as manic depression (Lyness, 2011), is a mental disorder that leads to changes in a person’s moods, ability to work or undertake numerous activities as well as shifts in energy (Goodwin & Sachs, 2010). The illness is mainly characterized by numerous mood swings, irritability, feelings of hopelessness and sadness and suicidal thoughts and attempts (NIMH, 2012). The case is that of one of the patient that I have handled while at the community hospital. When the young man, Paul, visited the clinic he presented a number of behaviors that led to the diagnosis of the disorder. The abnormal behaviours were characterized by pacing up and down, incoherent fast speech and increased irritability. On the other hand, the 28 year old patient seemed to feel agonized by life to an extent that he considered it screwed up and contemplated suicide. Despite the fact that Paul looked disoriented with fluctuating bouts of energy and lethargy, the arrival of paramedics had completed irritated him. At one time, Paul reverted to a high mood during which he insisted on talking to his sisters and refused to be examined by the medics in spite of his awareness of the situation at hand. His mood was that of agitation and he looked so pressed and tired that he could hardly remain steady on his feet. At one point, in his many outbursts, Paul had talked of his boss threatening to fire him over his attitude at work. Further inquiries from his sister indicated that Paul was having problems at work as a result of his frequent mood changes and irritation that were as a result of his illness. The man had been issued with a suspension letter by his boss a few days prior his coming to the hospital. The patient was reported to have missed work for many days and his productivity reported to be very poor. Identified Policies related to the Case There are a number of policy issues that guide the diagnosis, treatment and care of mental illnesses. These are useful in the provision of guidelines on how the various mental health illnesses should be addressed not just in the health sector, but also in the social and economic institutions as well. Statistics obtained from the National Institute of Mental Health in 2002 indicate that over 2 million adults in American suffer from bipolar disorder (NIMH, 2002). By 2005, the number had increased to 5.8 million adults (Kessler et al., 2005). This makes a huge part of the working population making the diseases have an enormous effect on the economic sector. Putting this into consideration, a number of policies have been implemented to allow for interventions to the gap in the employment sector from this mental illness to be put in place. The policies among other things protect bipolar patients from discrimination and failed employment. Bipolar disorder has been regarded as a disability and the patients are therefore protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The law serves towards protecting persons with disabilities. According to the act, an individual is regarded as disabled if he or she has a mental or physical impairment that prevents him or her from engaging in one or more activity (EEOC, 2011). Upon assessment, bipolar disorder has been found to always limit the normal functioning of the brain as well as the normal undertaking of the various day to day activities. Having an accommodation as a bipolar disorder patient allows one to freely acquire reduced hours of work, get moved a working area that is more peaceful and quieter, break off from the job once in a while, get a job that is not strenuous and modify the various roles and responsibilities at work. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the discrimination of an employee or a potential employee on the basis of his disability, color, race, family or class among other factors is unlawful (EEOC, 2011). Through the ADA act, therefore, bipolar patients are protected from getting fired or unfairly dismissed on the basis of their illness. Stakeholders The stakeholders relevant to this case include the health professional (nurses, psychiatrists and doctors) and governmental and Nongovernmental organizations such as National Alliance on mental Illness (NAMI), The National Institute of Health (NIH) which is under the US Department of Health and Human Services, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) the National Institute of Mental Health, Mental Health America and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance. In relation to his job insecurity, Paul’s employer company will serve as another major stakeholder in this case. Nursing’s political involvement in the issue The role of every nurse should be to ensure that the patient receives all necessary treatment and care, and to provide all necessary information related to the patient’s illness not just for the patient but other affected persons, such as family members and guardians, as well (Hungerford, 2012). In the case presented above, the main role of the nurse will be in educating the patient about the protection accorded by the ADA with regard to his employment status. Providing related information to the patient’s employer may also be another important aspect. In case the employer is aware of the patient’s condition and his various rights as stipulated in by the ADA act, then necessary legal action needs to be taken against him. Nurses can help in providing all the relevant information related to bipolar disorders and employment not just to the patients, but to the various work institutions as well for both employees and employers to gain all the relevant knowledge. Personal Opinion With this, then it is evident that Paul does not deserve to be dismissed from his job provided he has an accommodation. The patient has been protected by the ADA and needs to be aware of this. Generally, patients suffering from bipolar disorder in the US need to be well aware of the various policies that protect them and the various rights and privileges they enjoy. Just as is common with all other mental illnesses, bipolar disorder has a strong impact on a patient’s relationships with other people that include friends, colleagues, spouses and family members. The need for psychotherapy for bipolar patients undergoing treatment is therefore important, making it need an evident one in this case. Psychotherapy is said to be important in mending the broken relationships. The available professional resources are likely to be highly beneficial for the family members as well as help the patients mend their relationships at work. References Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). (2000). EEOC enforcement guidance on the Americans with Disabilities Act and Psychiatric disabilities.  http://www.eeoc.gov/policy/docs/psych.html Goodwin, G. & Sachs, G. ( 2010). Fast Facts: Bipolar disorder. , Oxfordshire: Health Press Limited Abingdon. Hungerford, C., Clancy, R., Hodgson, D., Jones, T., Harrison, A. & Hart, C. (2012). Mental Health Care: An Introduction for Health Professionals. Sydney: Wiley Meadows. Kessler, R., Chiu, W.,Demler, O. &Walters, E. (2005). Prevalence, severity and comorbidity of twelve-month DSM-IV disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication (NCS-R). Archives of General Psychiatry, 62 (6): 617-27. Lyness, J. ( 2011). Psychiatric disorders in medical practice. Saunders Elsevier: Philadelphia. National Institute of Mental Health. (2002). Bipolar disorder.  http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/bipolar-disorder/complete- index.shtml Read More
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