AAN News & Opinion
- Increased access to health insurance and health care, increased complexity of patients in our aging society, and challenges in primary care team staffing are among many current challenges to providing high quality, effective, and satisfying care to all patients. At the same time, the team is expected to attend to the equally important need for prevention, health promotion, and care coordination and management of the population at large. The demand to manage multiple, comorbid complex chronic illnesses are overwhelming the primary care system and causing waits, delays, and a shifts toward receiving primary care in inappropriate settings such as the emergency room (ER).
- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (2016a) state that the misuse and illicit use of prescription analgesic drugs and use of heroin have skyrocketed to epidemic proportions. Former Surgeon General Vivek Murtha's report, Facing Addiction in America (2016) notes that 12.5 million Americans use opioid pain relievers in ways other than those intended by prescription (USHHS, 2016). Notably, about 61% of the US drug overdose deaths in 2014 involved an opiate (Rudd, Seth, David, & Scholl, 2016).
- Team-based, integrated models of care are essential to meeting the behavioral health needs of patients, families, and communities. To broaden the reach of effective integrated behavioral health care, all health providers must act to remove financial barriers, promote implementation of models designed for a wider range of populations, and improve access to services. The American Academy of Nursing identifies several actions in which nursing can partner with state and federal agencies, advocacy groups, and professional organizations to achieve these goals.