New Managerial Tools and Technology for Nurses
The purpose of this paper is to review some of the managerial tools and technology used my nurse managers to promote managerial control and increase performance of employees. The days of sitting at nurses’ station and hand writing the documentation into the patients’ chart are long gone. While it did take longer to establish computers into the world of patient care, computers have evolved to accommodate the complex needs at hospitals and other medical facilities (Saranto & Leino-Kilpi, 1997). Obviously improvements need to be made; however, I will examine some of the electronic gadgets utilized today.
Security of patient data prevented the use of computers for anything other than ordering supplies and scheduling employees for several years within the medical arena (Sampers, 2013). In the late 1990’s computers began replacing patient charts, paper documentation began to disappear, and nurses entered the electronic age kicking and screaming (Sampers, 2013).
Stationary computers at the nurses station area, initially were slow and only used to order laboratory tests and xrays. Staff would have to wait for his or her turn to use the computer wasting precious time. Today, in an attempt to assist nurses with time management, decrease errors, and allow for more time with patients, as well as allow nurse managers to better control and supervise staff, the stationary computers have evolved (Saranto & Leino-Kilpi, 1997).
Modern technology in medicine now includes the use of hand held personal digital assistants (PDA), computers, and real-time locating systems including nurse locators. This paper will examine each of these technological advances and how each assists in mangerial control and increases staff production.
Personal Digital Assistant (PDA)
Initially PDA use was reserved for physicians to enable quick reference for diagnosis and medication information; however, today nurses also utilize this tool to do many tasks within the majority of hospitals (Garrett & Klein, 2008). A portable, hand-held device, the PDA enables nurses to record patient vital signs, patient assessments, and completion of physician orders (Garrett & Klein, 2008) . The device once attached to a charging station, then down loads the data into the main computer system for the hospital. Once downloaded, the data is acceccible to all other departments and physicians (Garrett & Klein, 2008). This process allows the nurse to quickly document in real time, without interruption and without stepping away from the patient. PDA use is dependent on software included; however, many facilities include ability to research diagnoses, and medications. Nurses, while at the bedside have the capability to answer patient questions regarding medications and diagnosis (Garrett & Klein, 2008). Previously, a nurse had to walk to nurses station, find the appropriate resource book, look up data, write it down, and take it back to the...