Blending science, ethics and politics, advocacy is self-initiated, evidence-based, strategic action that health professionals can take
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you also have to have a high quality post from a content perspective. This means it also needs to do more than agree with or praise a class mate. If you agree with a classmate, explain why, give an example, share what you learned in the readings
Blending science, ethics and politics, advocacy is self-initiated, evidence-based, strategic action that health professionals can take to help transform systems and improve the environments and policies which shape their patients’ behaviors and choices, and ultimately their health.
The health professions see advocacy as a core competence of professional practice, alongside scientific knowledge, clinical and inter-personal skills.
There are a wide variety of ways in which health professionals may engage in system level advocacy work, including a representative role (speaking for people), an accompanying role (speaking with people), an empowering role (enabling people to speak for themselves), a mediating role (facilitating communication between people), a modelling role (demonstrating practice to people and policy-makers), a negotiating role (bargaining with those in power), and a networking role (building coalitions).
Health professionals, in approaching advocacy work, can take one of two basic political approaches: they can take a condemnatory approach or a collaborative, encouraging approach. In practice, advocacy combines the two to a greater or lesser extent: for example, highlighting the inadequacies of specific policies or practices and also suggesting alternatives that would have more desirable effects. Content, style and method of delivery will vary between and within organizations (and advocates) according to issue and circumstances. Most importantly, each health professional will need to find a model that best suits their nature and their understanding of the challenges they face.
The objective with advocacy is not merely to place concerns in the public arena and then wait for the process to unfold. Once an objective has been set, advocates must seek to maximize support with a strategic plan which incorporates ways to argue the case, engage key stakeholders and put pressure on decision makers for a favorable outcome. System-level advocacy plans are not so different from patient care plans. Identifying goals and objectives is of the utmost importance. In advocacy the hope may be to achieve the goal over a 10 to 20 year period. Progress towards this vision of the future is a matter of small steps, some of which may not necessarily go in the right direction. The strategy for your action should contain a series of objectives that you want to change in the short-term.