Cardiovascular Health Gender Disparities: The Pathway to Policy

Tuesday, 10 November 2015: 10:00 AM

Tammy C. Lu, BSN, RN1
Nicole J. Wollard, BSN, RN1
Eric T. Tobin, BSN, RN1
Joseph F. Burkard, DNSc, MSNA, BSN, RN, CRNA2
(1)Hahn School of Nursing, University of San Diego, San Diego, CA, USA
(2)School of Nursing, University of San Diego, San Diego, CA, USA

Background: Despite public awareness of cardiovascular disease, morbidity, and mortality for women continues to be a public health concern.  Gaps in current female cardiovascular health research has led to assumptions in treatment, which may have resulted in suboptimal management.

Purpose: The purpose of this presentation is to discuss cardiovascular disease disparities in women, analyze the current health policy process using A Problem-Centered Public Policy-Making Process Model, and provide recommendations for Registered Nurses (RNs) and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN's) to participate and influence health policy.

 Conclusions: Current health policy needs to address the specific health care needs of women with cardiovascular disease.  This presentation addresses the recommendations for RNs and APRNs who positively contribute to health policy development and influence social determinants of health.

 Implications for Practice: Nurse leaders are influential to shape health policy to include support of gender specific comprehensive cardiovascular care through health promotion, disease prevention, early diagnosis, and gender specific treatment.  Lobbying for effective health policy changes will ensure Nurses provide patient-centric and gender-based care.  Health policy changes made in the United States can encourage other nations to influence and adopt gender specific cardiovascular health care practices. The nursing profession plays a pivotal role in influencing, leading, and supporting legislative health policy efforts.