Healthcare politics

It may seem to you that healthcare has been a national topic of debate among political leaders for as long as you can remember.

Healthcare has been a policy item and a topic of debate not only in recent times but as far back as the administration of the second U.S. president, John Adams. In 1798, Adams signed legislation requiring that 20 cents per month of a sailor’s paycheck be set aside for covering their medical bills. This represented the first major piece of U.S. healthcare legislation, and the topic of healthcare has been woven into presidential agendas and political debate ever since.

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As a healthcare professional, you may be called upon to provide expertise, guidance and/or opinions on healthcare matters as they are debated for inclusion into new policy. You may also be involved in planning new organizational policy and responses to changes in legislation. For all of these reasons you should be prepared to speak to national healthcare issues making the news.

In this Assignment, you will analyze recent presidential healthcare agendas. You also will prepare a fact sheet to communicate the importance of a healthcare issue and the impact on this issue of recent or proposed policy.

To Prepare:

  • Review the agenda priorities of the current/sitting U.S. president and the two previous presidential administrations.
  • Select an issue related to healthcare that was addressed by each of the last three U.S. presidential administrations.
  • Reflect on the focus of their respective agendas, including the allocation of financial resources for addressing the healthcare issue you selected.
  • Consider how you would communicate the importance of a healthcare issue to a legislator/policymaker or a member of their staff for inclusion on an agenda.

The Assignment: (1- to 2-page Comparison Grid, 1-Page Analysis, and 1-page Fact Sheet)

Part 1: Agenda Comparison Grid

Use the Agenda Comparison Grid Template found in the Learning Resources and complete the Part 1: Agenda Comparison Grid based on the current/sitting U.S. president and the two previous presidential administrations and their agendas related to the public health concern you selected. Be sure to address the following:

  • Identify and provide a brief description of the population health concern you selected and the factors that contribute to it.
  • Describe the administrative agenda focus related to the issue you selected.
  • Identify the allocations of financial and other resources that the current and two previous presidents dedicated to this issue.
  • Explain how each of the presidential administrations approached the issue.

Part 2: Agenda Comparison Grid Analysis

Using the information you recorded in Part 1: Agenda Comparison Grid on the template, complete the Part 2: Agenda Comparison Grid Analysis portion of the template, by addressing the following:

  • Which administrative agency would most likely be responsible for helping you address the healthcare issue you selected?
  • How do you think your selected healthcare issue might get on the agenda for the current and two previous presidents? How does it stay there?
  • Who would you choose to be the entrepreneur/ champion/sponsor of the healthcare issue you selected for the current and two previous presidents?

Part 3: Fact Sheet or Talking Points Brief

Using the information recorded on the template in Parts 1 and 2, develop a 1-page narrative that you could use to communicate with a policymaker/legislator or a member of their staff for this healthcare issue. Be sure to address the following:

  • Summarize why this healthcare issue is important and should be included in the agenda for legislation.
  • Justify the role of the nurse in agenda setting for healthcare issues.

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