The HELP: MLP team is firmly committed to collecting data in order to better understand the impact our project has in several domains. We hypothesize that through the integration of legal services in healthcare settings we can not only remove barriers for clients, but that we are transforming the way that services are delivered by improving efficiencies, increasing the advocacy capacity of staff and reducing healthcare partner staff stress. This transformation, we believe, positively impacts staff and clients alike. In order to measure the impact of integrating HELP: MLP attorneys into the Philadelphia Nurse-Family Partnership and Mabel Morris Family Home Visit Program we conducted a qualitative study in March 2017.
The study assessed the project’s impact on nurses’ job satisfaction, efficacy, knowledge, ability to address social determinants of health, and impact on clients. We also collected data on perceived weaknesses and areas of improvement for the project. All public health home visiting nurses were invited to participate in the telephonic interview. Participation was voluntary. A total of ten nurses (37% of total nursing staff) participated.
The results of this preliminary study were positive. Nurses reported that the integration of legal services made them more effective at their jobs, more equipped to address social determinants of health, increased their advocacy capacity, and made them more knowledgeable. Furthermore, some nurses reported that the project has led to more efficiencies, greater confidence, and has lowered stress. The nurse respondents overwhelmingly agreed that the project was positively benefiting clients’ lives.
To read the complete qualitative study report please see Qualitative Study Results.