Note: the answer should be in a positive way
According to Sipes (2016), The American Nurses Association (ANA) defines nurse informatics as “the specialty that integrates nursing science with information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage and communicate data, information, knowledge and wisdom in nursing practice” (p.252). The nursing profession indeed has come a long way. As new technology in healthcare improves so will the nursing process. Nurse informaticists use technology to connect healthcare workers to the collected data wherein information is readily available for nurses to postulate interventions to deliver the best outcome.
Interaction between bedside nurses and nurse informaticists
In my experience as a bedside nurse, I don’t normally interact with the nurse informaticists of the organization I work for. Perhaps a few minutes every now and again when there is a new process that was just introduced or when they need to follow up and ask about how the staff nurses are doing with the new technology that came along. As a staff nurse, I get to interact more with the “super users” of the new technology that comes along. They are the ones that teach us bedside nurses about the new equipment, process change, charting on and of the new technology and how to navigate the new system. Given these new iphones that we now use, piloted in February of this year, the super users were the ones that are in attendance in the unit, available for any questions or difficulty we may face. Prior to the initiation of the said process, we had to attend an hour-long training about it and complete online training as well. This is not to say that we cannot call the nurse informaticists if we get into major issues. However for times as such, we go through the chain of command and if no one is knowledgeable to fix the issue, we call the experts. More often we call the service desk and they fix the issues we encounter on the system (EHR) over the phone.
Opportunities for improvement
Nursing is a continuous learning experience. It constantly evolves. From paper charting, now we have electronic charting, and from here, I’m quite sure we will see more interesting changes in the near future. EHR is really a marvelous technology, with the use of EHR, we can go back months, even years of patient history and we are able to compare from presentation or baseline even without having seen the patient first, we can pretty much formulate a good picture. My only comment about this is that human interaction is missing. My suggestion is that nurse informaticists should hold meetings probably, if feasible, at least every quarter, to check on the system’s strengths and weaknesses coming from the bedside nurses, the ones that use the technology day in and day out. I think, in that way, we, as bedside nurses at least can feel their palpable support. Additionally, nurse informaticists should work on possibly reducing redundancy in charting. The current EHR system we use at the organization I work for has so many redundant charting that I feel as though, it takes away from nurse to patient interaction. Moreover, honestly, I don’t even know the name of our organization’s nurse informaticists. Although I’m sure I can find it on the intranet and perhaps the one we see in the unit asking about any system issues is one of them, or maybe she is just another superuser, I honestly don’t know. I think we, as a people, are so in awe of new technology that we forget that human interaction is just as important.
Adams, E., Hussey, P., & Shaffer, F. A. (2015). Nursing informatics and leadership, an essential competency for a global priority: eHealth. Nurse Leader, 13(5), 52-57.
Glassman, K. S. (2017). Using data in nursing practice. American Nurse Today, 12(11), 45-47. Retrieved from: https://www.americannursetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/ant11-Data-1030.pdf
Sipes, C. (2016). Project Management: Essential skill of nurse informaticists. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 255, 252-256.