What is Nursing Informatics?
Technology and innovation have transformed the way people function personally and professionally. In the past, writing and mailing a letter was standard but now most people send electronic messages and text messages to phones. Healthcare has been changing tremendously as well, not only are paper charts and records becoming obsolete, but now many facilities are sharing test results, visit information details, and prescribed drug lists. This move into the digital age has helped improve healthcare by cutting costs in the long-term, increasing efficiency with decreased wait times, and reducing medical errors. This evolving technology expansion, commonly referred to as nursing informatics has created many opportunities for nursing professionals with information technology experience to move into this growing field.
The Delaware Health Information Network (DHIN), went live in 2007, which allows medical providers to provide better care by having the ability to review prior patient visits, surgeries, medications prescribed (“Delaware Health Information Network”, 2014). The creation of the DHIN and the initiative in the United States to make all medical records electronic creates an overwhelming need for more nursing informatics. There is an opportunity for states to align records allowing national trends to become more visible, identifying drug seekers, and promoting more proactive care instead of reactive care as health histories are visible nationwide.
Nursing Informatics professionals integrate technology with patient care. They look for ways to provide better care and improve the experience for the patient by reducing duplication, evaluating trends, forecasting, and implementing procedures based on data. Nurses are able to perform their job better by having more resources at their disposal and being able to make decisions more efficiently than they have in the past. Nurses can review vital signs history for a patient to spot abnormalities and creating a baseline with a few clicks of a mouse and identify inconsistencies and changes in health quickly, which saves not only time but lives too when using nursing informatics. Opportunities in nursing care can be discussed with management and the nursing informatics team to better serve patients. There is a huge push to reduce costs in healthcare and nursing informatics helps save money while improving patient care. Various members of the healthcare team can now look at the same patient's chart at the same time at many healthcare facilities. Nursing informatics professionals look for ways to improve the patient experience so that redundancy and waste are removed, but they try to keep the nursing process in mind to avoid sacrificing the level of care provided. Most jobs in this field are in hospitals, insurance companies, pharmaceutical and research companies, and healthcare consulting companies. The locations of available jobs are similar to those offered...