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Occupational health nursing: influence on policymaking.

Babbitz MA
NIOSH 1987 Jul; :47-50
The influence of occupational health nursing on policymaking was discussed. The nature of power and influence was summarized. Power can be defined as the ability and willingness to control or influence the behavior of others; influence can be regarded as resulting from the proper use of power. It is noted that nurses have traditionally viewed themselves as being without power. This has generally been attributed to the health care system being paternalistic in nature and nursing, by virtue of its being primarily a female profession, has been passive in nature. The origin and functions of OSHA were summarized. OSHA and its administrators set policy and develop constituencies who support their efforts to get appropriations from Congress and defend them from attack. It is noted that although standard setting and enforcement powers are assigned to OSHA, occupational safety and health policy is actually determined by the philosophical beliefs of the President, the controls exerted by the Office of Management and Budget, and the appropriations voted by Congress. General health and nursing policy is also established by Congress passing legislation and appropriating monies for implementing programs. The programs are administered by the Department of Health and Human Services. It is suggested that nurses can exert power by directing their energies toward influencing legislators and administrators. They can exert power collectively through professional organizations and individually through participation in elections, letter writing, and membership in political action committees.
Occupational-health-nursing; Regulations; Industrial-hygiene; Health-care-personnel; Health-protection; Occupational-health-services; Sex-factors; Industrial-safety
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Horvitz IA
Fiscal Year
Source Name
Proceedings of the National Occupational Health Nursing Symposium: State of the Art and Directions for the Future, Cincinnati, Ohio, June 1-3, 1983
Page last reviewed: February 11, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division