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The Transformative Impact of Nursing Informatics on Patient Care

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Words: 1945 |

Pages: 4|

10 min read

Published: Feb 13, 2024

Words: 1945|Pages: 4|10 min read

Published: Feb 13, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Why Is Nursing Informatics So Important?
  2. Improved Documentation
  3. Reduced Medical Errors
  4. Reduced Costs
  5. Improved Coordination of Care
  6. Conclusion

Nursing informatics is a field of nursing that incorporates nursing, computer, and information sciences to maintain and develop medical data and systems to support the practice of nursing, and to improve patient care outcomes. Technologies that have evolved due to health care/nursing informatics include:

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  • Computerized provider order entry (CPOE)
  • Electronic medical records (EMRs)
  • Test results
  • Progress notes
  • Nursing notes
  • Medication records.

There are three 'building blocks' of nursing communications - data, information, and knowledge. Data includes direct observations that do not need interpretation, such as:

  • Patient's name
  • Age
  • Vital signs
  • Disease history

Information is data that has been interpreted. Examples include:

  • Prevalence of hospital-acquired infections, by care unit
  • Percentage of patient care delays in outpatient clinics, by specialty
  • Knowledge is the amalgam of information to identify relationships that provide further observation to an issue. For example:
  • The effect of nurse-patient ratios and patient outcomes
  • Developing care protocols (i.e. anaphylactic reaction protocols, pressure ulcer protocols, etc.)

While nurses incorporate all three communication 'building blocks' in their daily routines, the three concepts are also stored in computer programs and software to assist health care providers across the continuum to provide high-quality, safe patient care.

Nurse informaticists work to develop communication and information technologies in health care. They also serve as educators, researchers, software engineers, and chief nursing officers. Using the 'building blocks' listed above, they help develop evidence-based policies and procedures for organizations.

Why Is Nursing Informatics So Important?

Nurses need information to care for patients safely. They need to be able to access medical histories, medication lists, lab and imaging results, and physician/interdisciplinary team notes to get a complete picture of a patient's clinical status. They use this information to make decisions efficiently to improve patient care outcomes.

Nurse informaticists, as well as other health care informaticists (pharmacists, physicians, etc.), play a critical role in the continuous development and improvement of health care technology. Communication is inarguably one of the most important aspects of patient safety. The contribution of nurse informaticists in developing and improving technology such as electronic medical records and computerized provider ordering has been crucial in reducing medical errors, patient care delays, and health care costs.

For example, before CPOE, nurses would need to transcribe provider orders by hand. Hard-to-read handwriting and human error caused transcription inaccuracies, which in turn led to medication errors, delays, and omissions.

Today, software exists where providers simply click a button and the right medication, dose, and frequency is selected. Additionally, some programs cross-check orders against the patient's allergies and/or duplicate orders to further protect patient safety.

Informatics is changing the face of healthcare. As technology advances, healthcare organizations and provider are able to collect, analyze and leverage data more effectively, influencing the way care is delivered, resources are managed and teams operate each day. You would bs hard-presses to find an aspect of medicine that has yet to be toughed by the mass collection and analysis of data that has been ushered in by the information age.

One specific area that heath informatics is having a significant impact on is the practice of nursing. Though the mission of nursing remains unchanged, the daily work of these professionals is being strongly influenced by informatics, with particular attention to the accuracy and communication of patient data and care.

The nursing profession is rapidly changing to keep up with advancements and new challenges in the healthcare filed. As direct caregivers, nurses re in the front lines of patient care and consequently often feel the impact of changes in best practices more immediately than other healthcare professionals.

‘A lot of these challenges can be supported by the avocation of information and communication technologies, particularly as hospitals are becoming more and more interested in reducing their costs and shifting care from hospital care to home care,’ Spyros said. ‘ Information and communication technologies, mobile health devices, wearable technologies are all becoming very, very important for supporting remote patient monitoring and home care’. In nursing, as with healthcare in general, informatics is being used to address the challenges of the day, significantly impacting the way nurses function in patient care. One of the primary ways that informatics has changed nursing practice is through documentation. Gone are the days of paper charts that had to be meticulously updated with handwritten notes. Today, nurses are more likely to input notes into electronic health records and other systems that keep a patient’s medical history up-to-date and eHealth informatics is also an important part of care coordination in nursing. The ability to track staffing, workflow and communication can help nurses to identify areas where current processes can be improved. This can also help ensure that staffing levels remain adequate, which is critical for providing patients with the best possible care. If the nurse-to-patient ratio drops too low, patients are more likely to suffer adverse results. Maintaining adequate levels helps nurses provide the best possible care each day without burning out.

Evidence-based practices have long been an essential part of nursing. Today, determining those best practices involves the use of health informatics. Analyzing the mass quantities of data collected regarding patient care and outcomes helps to determine how best to treat these conditions and situations in the future. The more data that is collected and analyzed, the more accurate the resulting conclusions tend to be, providing the best possible information for determining how best to care for patients in the future.

The growing role of informatics in nursing has also created a number of new job titles for those with clinical experience and an interest in working with data. easily accessible.

Nurses at every level now work with informatics through patient records and other technology. However, some nurses choose to specifically focus their career on the intersection of informatics and clinical practice. There are a number of career options available in this lane, including the following:

  • Clinical informatics specialist
  • Nursing informatics specialist
  • Clinical analyst
  • Clinical informatics manager
  • Clinical informatics coordinator
  • Nursing informatics analyst

These roles can be found at every level and facet of healthcare organizations, including leadership and management, advocacy, risk analysis, compliance, consultation, research, evaluation and education. As informatics becomes a more prominent component of the nursing field, job opportunities will likely continue to develop.

While health informatics roles are open to professionals from a variety of backgrounds, nurses are particularly well-suited for these roles due to their knowledge of clinical workflow, previous healthcare education and experience with healthcare technology and information systems.

If you already have a clinical background in nursing, your next step route to one of these jobs is to pursue training specifically in health informatics. Though there are several ways to do this, one option is to earn a Master of Science in Health Informatics degree. In a master’s program, you will take courses on important topics such as healthcare information systems, healthcare IT vendor management, health information systems analysis and design and organizational issues in health informatics to prepare for a career in health informatics.

Improved Documentation

Documentation has long been considered an important part of the nursing profession, but it’s more vital than ever to the delivery of quality care. While the theory and practice of nursing, the standards of nursing practice, legal and ethical considerations, and other points that are taught in advanced nursing programs all influence the practice of nursing, it’s information, and specifically, electronic documentation, that is having the greatest influence on modern nursing.

Modern nursing care is driven by individual patient needs and history — information that is collected and organized in electronic patient records. By documenting a patient’s condition, and sharing that information electronically, nurses are able to more effectively manage care, and by extension, improve the quality of that care.

A great deal of documentation takes place automatically thanks to connected devices, which collect specific information in real time and transmit it to patient records. By looking at the documentation of a patient’s condition over time, nurses can make better decisions about how to provide care and when changes or adjustments need to be made.

Reduced Medical Errors

Patient safety is a primary concern of any health care provider, and nurses are often on the front lines of ensuring that their patients are kept safe and preventing medication errors, misdiagnoses, falls, and other problems. Health informatics provides important data that can prevent these errors; for example, an electronic record can provide information about a possible dangerous medication interaction or allergy that might not otherwise be immediately apparent. Armed with data, nurses can make quick decisions that keep their patients safe.

In fact, in a study by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a majority of nurses reported that when they have access to EHRs, they have fewer problems with getting patients ready for discharge, fewer medication errors, and better quality of care. And when it comes to transfers between departments, nearly 15 percent of the nurses surveyed reported that information was more likely to be shared and less likely to “fall between the cracks” when electronic systems are used.

Reduced Costs

Medical errors cost nearly billion every year, and many of those errors are preventable with informatics. Not only does information provide nurses with alerts to avoid errors, it also helps to automate certain tasks, both improving nurse productivity and preventing some of the costs associated with health care.

Improved Coordination of Care

Nurses are often called upon to help coordinate the care of their patients. This often means relaying information from physicians, therapists, pharmacy, billing, and more, both during care and at discharge. Without all of the necessary information, patient care could suffer. Informatics improves the coordination of this information, allowing nurses to give their patients all of the information they need, improving both outcomes and the satisfaction with care.

While there are some who criticize the use of informatics and technology to help manage care, arguing that it makes health care more impersonal, with the provider-patient relationship being replaced with data and algorithms, there is actually overwhelming evidence that informatics actually improves care. Nurses who are trained in this technology and how to best incorporate data into their workflow are often more productive and able to provide better care than ever before.

Conclusion

Nursing informatics is the specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information management and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage , and communicate data, information, knowledge, and wisdom in nursing practice. It supports nurses, consumers, patients, the interprofessional healthcare team, and other stakeholders in their decision-making in all roles and setting to achieve desired outcomes. This support is accomplished through the use of information structures, information process, and information technology. . Technologies that have evolved due to health care/nursing informatics include:

  • Computerized provider order entry (CPOE)
  • Electronic medical records (EMRs)
  • Test results
  • Progress notes
  • Nursing notes
  • Medication records

Nursing informatic is very important. Nurses need information to care for patients safely. They need to be able to access medical histories, medication lists, lab and imaging results, and physician/interdisciplinary team notes to get a complete picture of a patient's clinical status. They use this information to make decisions efficiently to improve patient care outcomes. Informatics is changing the face of healthcare. As technology advances, healthcare organizations and provider are able to collect, analyze and leverage data more effectively, influencing the way care is delivered, resources are managed and teams operate each day. You would bs hard-presses to find an aspect of medicine that has yet to be toughed by the mass collection and analysis of data that has been ushered in by the information age.

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While health informatics roles are open to professionals from a variety of backgrounds, nurses are particularly well-suited for these roles due to their knowledge of clinical workflow, previous healthcare education and experience with healthcare technology and information systems. While there are some who criticize the use of informatics and technology to help manage care, arguing that it makes health care more impersonal, with the provider-patient relationship being replaced with data and algorithms, there is actually overwhelming evidence that informatics actually improves care. Nurses who are trained in this technology and how to best incorporate data into their workflow are often more productive and able to provide better care than ever before.

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The Transformative Impact of Nursing Informatics on Patient Care. (2024, February 13). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 19, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-transformative-impact-of-nursing-informatics-on-patient-care/
“The Transformative Impact of Nursing Informatics on Patient Care.” GradesFixer, 13 Feb. 2024, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-transformative-impact-of-nursing-informatics-on-patient-care/
The Transformative Impact of Nursing Informatics on Patient Care. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-transformative-impact-of-nursing-informatics-on-patient-care/> [Accessed 19 Jun. 2024].
The Transformative Impact of Nursing Informatics on Patient Care [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Feb 13 [cited 2024 Jun 19]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-transformative-impact-of-nursing-informatics-on-patient-care/
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