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Developing an Advocacy Campaign

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Hypertension is a common health challenge especially amongst adults.  Studies have shown that there is a relationship between this hypertension with other cardiovascular diseases within this population.  Additionally, studies show that there is an increased prevalence of hypertension with age. Other risks that are linked to this health problem include; chronic kidney, congestive heart disease, stroke, as well as artery disease.  Changes in the blood pressure are associated with aging which has an impact on the prevalence of hypertension among the aging adult population. A drop in the blood pressure leads to the activation of the sympathetic nervous, which results in an increment in the contraction of the heart.  Other leading cause of hypertension among this population include stress and an unhealthy lifestyle. The objective of this paper is to create a health advocacy campaign for the management of Hypertension among the adult population.

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Hypertension and the Affected Population

Heart researchers indicate that the men, as well as women, are at the risk of developing high blood pressure complications. The prevalence of this complication is at 93% for men and 91% for women (UK Prospective Diabetes Study Group, 1998). The health problem is less prevalent among the female gender until the age of 50 years. However, it is important to note that the condition is similar for both genders above the age bracket of 50 years. Furthermore, the condition is more dominant among women compared to men above the ages of 65 years old.  The spread of this health challenge tends to grow with an increase of age.   The female’s gender is more likely to experience level two hypertension. The health complication is among the top condition that has reduced the life expectancy rate for adult citizens in the United States.

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The Campaign to Reduce Hypertension

There are several studies that have been done analyzing the effectiveness of the change in the lifestyle with an objective of reducing the causes of stress among the targeted population.  The results of the studies have a direct impact on decreasing the cases of hypertension in the targeted population.  Lu et al. (2000) note that the health advocacy campaign should target the women this is due to the fact that they are exposed to unhealthy lifestyle  as they get older.  Use of drugs, smoking as well as drinking alcohol is among the habits that should be reduced as an individual gets older, this aids to avoid the spike of the blood pressure due changes in the hormones released in the body.

There are several approaches that have been developed with the aim of reaching out to family members of the patients as well as the general public, sharing ideas regarding the health condition via short messages.  The hypertension campaign was designed to use two campaign types which include:

Provocative Appeals to Discourage Unhealthy Lifestyle

Research conducted in Norway shows that the use of a social media campaign, with the emotional appeal as well as provocative messages aided in discouraging adults from living an unhealthy lifestyle (Petrella, et al. 2005).The impact of this type of campaign resulted in a positive reaction towards quitting the use of drugs especially alcohol and smoking among the target population. However a study by Sagrillo (2013) indicated that it is difficult to quit unhealthy lifestyle among the adult population, this was due to the fact that addiction to such a lifestyle since their earlier. However, he argues that a change in the lifestyle should be focused on the younger population, the campaign should show the effects of an unhealthy lifestyle in older age.

Fear-Based Campaign

A study by a UK Prospective group (1998) argues that fear-based messages and campaigns, proved to have a positive result in passing the message on the topic of hypertension, this type of campaign was found to be helpful to the family members who had patients suffering from the medical complication. However, the targeted population invoked a defensive response to the campaign, the majority of them took the information from the campaign in a negative way. It is essential that this type of campaign makes a combination with the support of real-life experiences.

The hypertension campaign should organize and manage in such a way that the experiences of the adults with the history of the health problem are heard.  This would be a way of giving the campaign more credibility with the target population. Additionally, the campaigners should put more effort in the campaign to discourage unhealthy lifestyle among the younger population this is due to the fact that, their current lifestyle has a great impact in their old age.  Also, efforts should be put in place to build a positive image of the patients suffering from the medical complication.  The heart diseases and Stroke legislation of 2011, provides guidelines for the research and management of chronic diseases such as hypertension, reducing the cases of the disease through prevention strategies.  The legislation encourages the American citizens to learn more of the heart-related diseases including the signs and symptoms, as well as how to conduct an audit of their lifestyle.

Analysis of Various Methods Used to Influence Legislators

There are several methods that can be used to influence legislation of laws and policies. However, the best method that can be used is through the use of the three legs of lobbying.

Three Legs of Lobbying

To enable effective lobbying, the health care providers should understand the three legs of lobbying. The first leg is known as professional lobbying; as argued by Milstead (2014) the American Nurses Association spends more than $1.1 million in lobbying attempts. To make the hypertension campaign a reality the nurses need to act by making use of the board memberships to seek improvement in the management and create awareness regarding hypertension among the American Adults.  The grassroots lobbyist is the second leg. Milstead argues that this is made up of experts with knowledge regarding the campaign. In Hypertension campaign, the Nurses are the experts, therefore, need to speak up regarding the issues.  The final leg is the role of money, to support awareness about hypertension, it is essential that people know that there will be no taxes added and it will all be free.

Anticipated Obstacles to Overcome

Several obstacles need to be overcome in the hypertension awareness campaign. Even though the law supports persons living with the condition more need to be done. Awareness creation is vital, this can be achieved through media, as well as public service announcements, this will aid in addressing the change of lifestyle topic. (Petrella, et al. 2005). The use of social media can be used to bring the issue into the limelight.

How the Existing Laws Affect the Advocacy

Hypertension is among the top killer medical complication in the United States, in fact, it is the leading cause of death among hundreds if American adults, this has impacted the cost of providing healthcare.  There are several laws and policies that are a threat to the public health in regards to the control of hypertension cases; this is despite the act that the Health facilities in the United States have ample professionals with the knowledge on how to prevent the condition.

Ethical Consideration

Nursing decisions are a matter of life and death. Therefore ethics are fundamental in ensuring that the integrity of the nursing profession is maintained.  Nurses have an obligation to support each other with the aim of fulfilling their ethical responsibility to the patients, as well as the general public. However, there are changes in the nursing practice that has posted several challenges and dilemmas.

The American Nurses Association (ANA) Center for Ethics is committed in addressing the complexity in ethical as well as human right dilemmas that confront nurses in their day to day practice, additionally, the center has the responsibility of designing activities as well as programs that aim at increasing the ethical competence and sensitivity of the human right issues.  The goal of establishing the organization is to aid nurses to navigate through ethical as well as value conflicts that have a great impact on matters of life and death.  The center develops policies that address ethical issues at the state, national as well as international levels.

Review of the Code of Ethics

Provision 7

Under this provision, the nurse has the responsibility, regardless of their settings and roles, have to advance the profession through scholarly inquiry and research, development of professional standards, as well as the generation of health and nursing policies.  This provision focuses on the need for professions going an extra mile beyond providing care to patients at their bedsides, therefore taking an active role in advancing the nursing profession.  This is achieved by making contributions to education, development of knowledge, evidence-based practice as well as administration.   This indicates a direct link between the care provider and the patient; the nurse has the responsibility of advancing the profession in order to ensure that they are consistent in delivering high quality and safe care.

This provision is closely related to the health advocacy campaign since it ensures that all the nurses take part in the development of knowledge, evaluation as well as the application of the program among the targeted population. The nurses should observe the ethical codes as stipulated to the Institutional Review Board.  The contribution through the development of policies is a core responsibility of each nurse despite their settings; nurses should be involved in civic activities that have a close connection to the healthcare provider.

Provision 8

This provision states that nurse should be in collaboration with other health professionals as well as the general public in the protection of human rights, promotion of health diplomacy and the reduction of health disparities. The collaboration with various shareholders in the health sector is essential since it ensures that patients’ rights as well as the promotion of diplomacy with the aim of reducing disparities.  The nursing profession has the obligation of advancing health as well as human rights within the targeted population.

Provision 9

Under this provision, the nursing profession has the obligation of articulating nursing values, maintenance of the integrity of the profession as well as the integration of the various principles of social justice into the nursing health policies.   This provision provides a unified voice for the nurses to communicate, engage in self-reflection and evaluation as well as the promotion of their shared values. In the health advocacy campaign, it is essential that nurses publish their campaign within the required standards as a way of promoting awareness of the code of ethics. Integration of the social justice is achieved through promotion of open and honest communication channels as well as active engagement in political processes that have an impact on the health profession.

Ethical Consideration of the Advocacy Campaign

Ethical dilemmas are always present in most healthcare scenario. In the health advocacy campaign, which was designed to address hypertension amongst adults can’t be assumed to have immunity against any ethical dilemmas.  The confidentiality of the participants is one of the key ethical issues that must be maintained throughout the campaign. The participants will be sharing their experiences in the management of Hypertension; their personal information must be protected in order for them to gain confidence in the campaign.  This dilemma can be resolved through the signing of a written consent by both the participants and the campaigner. The consent should offer terms of protection against misuse of personal data.

Dilemma arises due to the conflict of vested interest. The public campaign is sponsored by powerful lobbying groups, who have great stakes in the topic of advocacy.  The campaigner faces the dilemma of whether to acknowledge the influence of the group or not.  How the groups should be acknowledged issue comes up. This is a question that needs to be considered in the campaign preparation before actual lobbying starts. According to Hanks (2013), a common weakness of a public health advocacy campaign is the role of the lobbying group.  Those against the campaign would make claims that the corporations, government departments as well as professional groups are out to hunt for profits and if it’s true this could be a major source of biases in the campaign. To resolve this dilemma, the lobbying group that is behind the campaign should not be mentioned if there is an opposing group that claims the campaign has contrary objectives, this is applicable even in the event that the lobbying group is funding the entire campaign.

There is no simple and straightforward to any of the ethical dilemmas in the provision of health care. Therefore, ethical principles should always support the choice made as well as the pragmatic assessments. However, the dominant theme in all dilemmas includes the decision between the end as well as the means. If the campaign manager is determined to win a debate over the change in policy, it is essential that they put into consideration other factors such as the views of their opponents as well as the risks involved in the campaign.

Ethics Laws

Protection of the participants and the communities from any harm is the top priority of the ethics laws, which should be addressed in the advocacy campaign (Milstead, 2013). By implementing this hypertension management policy lowers the cases of individuals suffering from the condition.  There are ethical laws that need to be applied in the campaign; this includes elicitation of funds, evaluation of the program as well as the cost of the advocacy.  Campaigns that are for nonprofit, it is a requirement that they register with the Secretary of the Senate as well as the Clerk of the House of Representatives (Tenenbaum, 2002). The campaigner should also make the campaign information accessible to the public for six years (Tenenbaum, 2002).


Public health advocacy is a vital component of the nursing practice, Based on the ANA Nursing Code of Ethics; it is important that nurses promote, strive to, as well as advocate for the protection of the health, rights and the safety of the patients   Social policies as well as their impacts on the health of individuals, their families as well as the communities that form part of the nursing research and nursing care as per the guidelines of ANA Social Policy Statement.

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