Discussion board posts throughout the semester prepare you to write your final paper – an original health policy analysis paper based on your own research on a topic of particular interest to you. Following the model presented in the Teitelbaum book, your policy analysis should consist of five main sections: Problem Statement; Background; Landscape; Options; and a Recommendation. It should also include a title and “phantom client.” Each section should be based on previous discussion board posts — and the feedback you’ve received about those posts. The paper should be 1,250-1,500 words (not including references) and contain supporting citations, which should be in AMA format (the style used by AJPH, a premier journal in the field… see formatting guidelines here: https://libguides.gwumc.edu/c.php?g=27773&p=170269 (Links to an external site.)). No cover page is necessary. Feedback from professor: You have made some progress and compiled good information about an important health policy problem. One major problem here is that large portions of the text you’ve included appear to be copied and pasted from published reports and articles. You must use your own wording and analyses – not only to avoid committing the serious offense of plagiarism, but also to ensure you are developing and concocting your own unique ideas. There are opportunities for improvement beyond using your own words. Your problem statement is convoluted, and there is no single phantom client. Also, the stakeholders (in the landscape section) need to be better defined. For example, “US federal government” is too broad of a category. Go back to previous discussion boards to see my detailed feedback about the Background, Landscape, and Options sections. Also, review the slide presentations on our course site that explain the assignment, and Chapter 14 of the textbook, which offers a detailed overview of how to execute it. I’m including here adjusted feedback I gave you on a previous post because some of the same issues remain. Please note: I am available to talk with you at any point about this assignment. Please contact me to set up an appointment. 1. Each of the sections of the paper are interrelated and you still need to identify only one client for whom you are writing the brief. The client you identify determines which options you’ll present, since the options have to be “executable” by the client. So, if your client is the FL State Medical Board, you’d restate the problem statement to be something like, “What rules and regulations should the FSMB recommend members follow to ensure that patients’ privacy is protected when they use telemedicine?” If you go with that problem statement, the options you present (and the background section, too) would be geared at actions physicians could take to protect patients’ privacy, and their own liability. 2. Note that each option should begin with the action you are recommending. So, for option 1, it could be “Adhere to regulations regarding obtaining Informed Consent.” That way, you have a clear statement that explains your focus at the outset of each section. 3. Option 2 could be more succinctly stated as “Develop a system for securely sharing medical records.” Then, a third option could be something having to do with security measures, such as “Adopt security measures for electronic communication such as encryption and authentication.” For more on this, see https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5716616/ 4. Complicate your explanations of Options by including multiple citations for each, where possible, and fully explaining relevant available evidence. For example, if a specific Option has been considered or implemented somewhere (whether it has failed or succeeded), report on the process and/or outcomes. 5. Note the following from the textbook: “Your options analysis must include a discussion of the pros (what is useful) as well as the cons (what is problematic) of each option. Although policymakers often seek a “silver bullet” that solves a problem without any negative effects, it is highly unlikely that such an option exists.” In other words, use the other sections of your analysis to think through the possible pros and cons of each option, then explain them. Which stakeholders are likely to disagree or agree with the Option, and why? Considering the Background and Landscape sections, what are the economic and social payoffs and costs of the Option? 6. Note that the Recommendation you provide should be directly from the list of options, and you should explain why the pros outweigh the cons. Even if you say that eventually, all the options should be implemented, you need to choose one that should be put in place as a priority. Why is your recommended option better than the others? Is it likely to reach more people? Is it less likely than the others to encounter opposition? Is it lower cost and lower maintenance? 7. It looks like you have a few good references at the bottom of the brief. Note that every paragraph within each section of the paper should contain at least one citation/reference. Your reader should know where you are getting your information. See citation information/formatting explanations here: https://library.tamu.edu/help/help-yourself/citing-sources/files/Using-the-AMA-Style.pdf. Note that you should not have to format references manually; as we discussed in the first weeks of class, most citation software (RefWorks, Zotero) can be programmed to output references in a particular style.
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