Essay: Informatics and Technology in Nursing

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  • Subject area(s): Information technology essays
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  • Published on: January 22, 2019
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  • Informatics and Technology in Nursing
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In nursing Informatics and Technology are defined as “specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage and communicate data, information, knowledge and wisdom in nursing practice, consumers, patients, the interprofessional healthcare team and other stakeholders in their decision making in all roles and settings to achieve desired outcomes” (American Nurses Association, 2015). Informatics and Technology are a huge aspect when it comes to the medical field in many ways from communication, documents and much more. There are many management tools to support safe processes of care and to evaluate impact on patient outcomes. This includes the famous EHRs that are common almost anywhere you will go. Patient education comes in when you are looking at information management technologies which uses and application to plan and document the patient’s care. Lastly, I will talk about the appropriate technology for assessing and monitoring the patients overall outcome.

Let us first talk about applying the technology to the knowledge that we already have to help identify the potential problems earlier. This could be a huge inconvenience when in a hospital if there is a patient that needs to be seen for something minor like a stomach ache that could turn into something as big as appendicitis. Some advanced technology helps us communicate in ways where we could know this information before anything needed to escalate to that. When speaking of electronic documents, you need to identify changes in the patients stays that can occur quickly so EHRs are useful for that as well. This information is all available readily for when the doctor or nurse need it. Then, the nurse is able to use this knowledge to formulate an appropriate plan of action.

Nursing informatics is definitely a growing field because as nurses we tend to face ever changing and challenging practice situations. Competency in nursing informatics promises to strengthen our clinical decision-making skills. We need documentation to keep track of everything that goes on with the many patients we get assigned throughout the work day. Although new technology may be a challenging for some, informatics will enhance nursing practice and will help us to learn much more useful information. This will make us have quicker access to patient information, improve overall efficiency, and see a reduction in potential errors. It would be great to walk into work knowing that your patient information is safe and potential errors are limited.

In the health systems today, technology plays an important role in education and nursing work. Have you ever walked into a hospital that does not use technology in every room possible? EHRs, Imaging machines, X-rays and much more are all over the hospital to be used by medical professionals in determining the best care for the patients. The criteria used for selecting studies primarily focuses on nursing informatics and the importance of expertise in the effective use of information technology. This happens to be included in all aspects of the nursing profession. These include times in critical assessments of emerging technologies, the key elements of nursing informatics implementation were considered as healthcare promotion, advanced systems, internet, and networked.

When looking at the background of technology and informatics the term “nursing informatics” has been considered a specialization in nursing resources since 1984. Since this time they have had a huge impact on the nursing and medical career to this day. Many aspects such as data recovery, ethics, patient care, decision support systems, imaging informatics, computer science, information science, security, e-learning and telenursing have been added to the field as well. Hana defined Nursing Informatics as the application it in the nursing duties including education, management and practice in 1985. Integration of information science, computer science and nursing science to support nursing practice and knowledge management. So as you can tell it has been implemented for much longer than we know. Many people think that EHRs and some technology have just started to become popular in helping medical professionals but that is not true at all.

Nursing CORE competencies come into play because nurses will be able to use advanced technology and to analyze and synthesize information with this. When being an advocate for your patient you need to make sure that you have their best interest at heart. Along with that, they will collaborate to make important decisions to maximize and optimize patient outcomes. As we all know, the patient comes first and we do whatever they need for their benefit of health. This is important because the nurses will utilize healthcare information technologies to support their practice and provide superior care for the patients. The goal for nursing informatics is to “improve the health of populations, communities, families and individuals by optimizing information management, increasing the communication and exchange of data, and empowering patients.”

In CORE competency the utilization and understanding of technologies are that of to increase clinical knowledge, research and translation to practice. Nurses are known to be advocates for their patients with a thorough understanding of the clinical environment. So with that being said they need to know what will benefit their patients best. Patients are always looking to technological resources to gain insights into clinical problems. This article has said that nurse of the future will demonstrate mastery of nursing informatics to optimize patient care, nurse outcomes and the profession. They are advocating that this is the best for their patients and the way everything is run.

Believe it or not with EHRs in the medical field there are benefits but there are also downfalls in the system. They could crash, run slow, not give adequate information or sometimes the systems will just fail. They are mainly designed to help with the organization of records, have less paper being used and for many other beneficial reasons. But, they are a huge deal when it comes to nursing! If you are not aware, EHRs are “a documentation tool that yields data useful in enhancing patient safety, evaluating care quality, maximizing efficiency, and measuring staffing needs. There are much dissatisfaction with the designs and the electronic processes.

Nursing issues include medication safety, documentation and standards of practice, and EHR efficiency. IT concerns include interoperability, vendors, innovation, nursing voice, education, and collaboration. When it comes to solving this issue there are some things that could possibly be done but overall; systems have errors. If hospitals are using them they have to realize that there are consequences to it. In order to help with this issue we could have backup paper medical records in which most places do. This could help in case something does not save correctly, if the systems are down or if they need to check if something was not put in the correct way. Another option would be digital medical records which is intended to facilitate information sharing while reducing costs for chart storage and management.

With other alternatives to EHRs the digital medical records have a potential leverage digital tools to provide clinical alerts, and connect experts for healthcare decision support. They are used to improve care, increase patient participation, and improve quality of care. Health care providers are using health IT at unpredicted levels now. As of 2015, 80% of physician offices have used certified EHRs which are said to work extremely well. We are trying to figure out a way to make the EHR certification evolve to be more responsible for patient and physician needs. They need to be more flexible to allow new tools to be adapted. The clinical utility if the medical record must be recovered. Time is also
extremely limited for physicians so it is convenient to have working EHRs.

Lastly I researched the implications for nursing practice and future nursing research. There are so many ways this is implemented for nursing including genetics and genomics, less invasive and more accurate tools for diagnostics and treatment, 3D printing, robotics, biometrics, and EHR. With genetics the majority of disease risk, health conditions and the therapies used to treat those conditions have a genetic and/or genomic element influenced by environmental, lifestyle, and other factors therefore impacting the entire nursing profession. Non-invasive and minimally invasive tools for diagnostics and treatment generally result in lower patient risk and cost. Biometrics increase the security of confidential healthcare information and eliminate the costs of managing lost passwords.

To conclude, I would like to say that informatics and technology is a huge aspect in the nursing field as it helps us communicate, better ourselves, and better our patients. With what has been discussed it is clear to see that it is significant to the practice of nursing. Not only that but with the downsides of technology there are many ways to help reduce that and make it better. With the implications there are too many to list for the medical field. Overall it is there to make patient care better and have a better outcome. Overall technology will always have downfalls but I feel as though it is important for the medical field and should never be overlooked.

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