A nursing career in public policy was considered unique decades ago. However, increasingly nurses have developed the skill and expertise needed to inform the policy-making process through their professional and voluntary endeavors. Nurses now serve in numerous leadership roles where they use their health policy expertise to shape the policy discourse, monitor the impact of legislation, and oversee regulatory processes.

In addition to the increased numbers of nurses working in governmental and nongovernmental agencies, nurses serve as elected officials and work as health ­policy consultants or health care ­lobbyists. Regardless of role or setting, nurses working in the policy arena are ­required to use their public policy acumen to inform legislation, oversee regulations, or advocate for policies that are of benefit to consumers, patients, and the profession.

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