177444 Changes in political astuteness following a nurse legislative day

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 5:10 PM

Janet Primomo, PhD , Nursing, University of Washington, Tacoma, Tacoma, WA
The Washington State Nurses Association holds a Nurse Legislative Day each legislative session that includes both educational and experiential activities related to the policy process and political advocacy. However, little is known about the effectiveness of these activities on political astuteness. The purpose of this research is to determine if political astuteness changes after participants attend an organized legislative day.

Approximately 400 student nurses and registered nurses who attended Legislative Day on February 4, 2008 were invited to participate in a web-based survey one month following the event. Participants completed the Political Astuteness Inventory, a 40-item structured inventory. They were asked to think back to how they would have responded before Legislative Day as well as how they would respond at the time they completed the survey (following Legislative Day). Sample items include: “I voted in the last election” and “I know of at least two issues related to my profession that are currently under discussion at the state or national level.” Four levels of political astuteness are calculated (totally unaware politically; slightly aware of the implications of politics for nursing; shows a beginning political astuteness; and politically astute and an asset to the profession of nursing).

Levels of political astuteness according to educational preparation in nursing will be described. Changes in political astuteness following participation in Legislative Day will be examined. Understanding if experiential activities such as attending a legislative day influence nurses' knowledge of and participation in the policy process is a first step in enhancing nurses' roles as policy advocates.

Learning Objectives:
1. Contrast the levels of political astuteness among nursing students and nurses who attended a nurse legislative day. 2. Describe changes in political astuteness following participation in a nurse legislative day.

Keywords: Politics, Nurses

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the investigator of the study.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.