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The Future of Nursing Informatics

Aug 31, 2017 | 0 comments

Aug 31, 2017 | Essays | 0 comments

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 The Future of Nursing Informatics



The greatest tool for nurses is information. They record information, retrieve it and often apply it to ensure efficient care for their patients. The nursing process is often made difficult if information is not recorded properly or cannot be traced. Informatics in nursing brings on a generally ideal way for nurses to record information and retrieve it. Nursing informatics brings together the many roles of the nurse and makes an expert out of each one. Once mastered, the systems provide an easy linkage to the patients and the other clinicians involved in the care of the patients. Hospitals are able to run smoothly, attend to more patients and improve the success rate of standardised care. The nursing skills are greatly improved and there is presence of greater job satisfaction.  The systems are based on the success of project management systems, noting the similarities between projects and the nursing process.
Nursing Informatics. 1
Introduction. 4
Topic Availability. 5
Information Availability. 6
Personal view.. 7



Nursing Informatics is a discipline that integrates computer science, nursing science and information science in managing and communicating data, knowledge, information and wisdom in the practice of nursing (American Nursing Association, 2010). Nursing Informatics supports patients, consumers, nurses in their decision making in all settings and roles. The support is accomplished through use of information processes, structures and technology. According to (Baker, 2012), the primary emphasis of Nursing Informatics is documentation because quality care relies on effective communication among the providers of healthcare. Given that provides of healthcare primarily communicate through notes in documenting the carts for patients, Nursing Informatics seek to improve the accuracy, timeliness and speed  of patience charting continually, to make  better patients care decisions. Nursing Informatics is important to the patients, nurses and the consumers because as health care delivery changes to include the greater use of information technology, Nursing Informatics will be vital in transforming the healthcare system. The informatics nurses are responsible for driving interoperable systems implementations within the organizations for healthcare delivery. Moreover, they effect change in the adoption and development of interoperable systems in the nation to demonstrate quantifiable impact on the health of a nation. The implication of the Nursing Informatics is that the patients are not bound to the physical space. Technology that Nursing Informatics relies is revolutionizing the manner in which healthcare is delivered. The health care providers and the consumers are embracing new technological solutions into their operations and daily lives. These include the mobile computers, wireless solutions and the automated exchange which is a promising gesture of future development of Nursing Informatics.


Topic Availability

This essay employed different search strategies to get the topic, resource literature and information. First and foremost, university library and online websites and libraries were used.  Secondly, different search engines such as Google, was used in searching relevant information on the internet on different websites for online journal to access the relevant ones. To get the exact and the relevant articles or any online articles or journals needed, different data bases which had possibilities of obtaining the exact articles or the related articles were searched. The online database for the university was very much helpful when searching different articles since it was easy to access and free, unlike most online websites which are for commercial purposes and needed subscription which there was no need of subscription.
To begin the search, the researcher started the search with the most comprehensive data base that is Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (Wainwright, 2014). The search then continued to search engines such as British Nursing Index, MEDLINE. Moreover PubMed and NCBI were other major search engines which assisted with some of the relevant articles for the essay. These search engines were used because they contained most of the peer review articles and books of Nursing Informatics. To limit and narrow down the search my topic in the articles, internal searches of the databases was used by inserting full length of texts and searching the relevant articles from the list of journals displayed. According Watson (2012), in order to narrow down the search, limits were used in the data bases. To avoid “full text” limitation, one or two limits were used at a time, as there were chances of missing important articles. To narrow down the search for “Future of Nursing Informatics,” the researcher used research articles after the year 2010 in reader to find up to date research and to avoid outdated research articles. This brought about 371 hits from 1278, which was a fair number, not too broad and not too narrow. I did also similar searches on topics such as “what is Nursing Informatics,” “Transformation of Nursing Informatics,” “role of nurses in Nursing Informatics.” Saber and McCormick (2011) stated that it is important to use the exact specific words in search engines to get related articles. All data bases that are relevant were searched and scrutinized all the terms used in the search for alternative spellings or terms. Furthermore, assessment on the search strategy used was done to ensure that some relevant studies that could be a great source of information were not left out by being too specific. In data extraction, the factors considered included the following; study design, performing year, publication years, characteristics of the population of study for instance the geographical setting, variance and risk estimates and assessment procedures. The essay used different sources in the search strategy which include electronic data bases, conference abstracts, hand searching, and internet.

Information Availability

During the process of searching information about “the future of nursing informatics,” most of the information available were geared towards the health care professionals, and other sections of the information were to help the consumers in understanding their roles health care delivery. The essay sampled some of the available literature during the search on the topic and on the available resources and grouped them in three broad categories; involvement of patients in their care; Nurses updating their knowledge on Nursing informatics, challenges of nursing informatics in future. These broad categories summarized the focus of the topic for this essay.
The available information of the category of involving the patients during their care for the future of nursing informatics, many articles and journals discussed the need of the nurses of better engaging their patients in management of their health using the technology. This will ensure that they have confidence and knowledge necessary in taking control of their own health outside the healthcare settings. Empowering patients to improve their conditions from getting worse is important since it will enable the patients to control their health condition when at home away from the hospital setting. Moreover, empowering of the patients is important and helpful in making decisions when the nurses are not around to assist. Lastly, they are able to communicate with the nurses using technological devices like smartphones to ask questions and get assistance when at home (Carty, 2012).
On the category of “Nurses updating their knowledge on Nursing Informatics” to determine the future of Nursing Informatics, several articles discussed that the nurses have a duty and a role to advance their knowledge base to provide quality care to patients to provide high standards of care and practice all times, and also to keep their knowledge and skills up to date (Chinn, 2010).therefore, the future of nursing Informatics also lies on the willingness of the health care providers to update their knowledge base.
Lastly, on the challenges of Nursing Informatics in future, the essay found several challenges to the discipline such lack of personnel, lack of resources, management factors, resistance to change from the healthcare professionals amongst others (Chinn, 2010). Moreover, to the consumers, the essay found out that they pose a challenge to the future of Nursing Informatics especially for the patients who do not embrace or cooperate with the healthcare workers.

Personal view

The benefits and drawbacks of nursing informatics in future are many.
Nursing informatics facilitate and promote access to references and resources
Delivery of nursing education is being carried out in convenient and innovative ways, including the use of virtual classrooms, simulations, podcasts, distance education, online assessments and web conferencing. Similar to the nursing practice settings, nursing education
Nursing informatics also supports their main mission of delivering evidence based care that is of high quality
Helps in improving key relationships with care recipients and providers
Nursinginformatics options of treatment is going online. For instance, I have engaged on several occasions on online healthcare with the emergence of telenursing and telemedicine that offers different health services using telecommunication such as video and phone. For provision of improved instant access to care and also timely follow up for monitoring and compliance. The only challenge to improved relationships between care recipientsand providers is that as nursing processes and practice continue to evolve in intervention, assessment, and evaluation, competency levels needto be enhanced and refined continuously in order to maintain proficiency with the constantly and new updated ICTs being implemented in the healthcare settings.
Nursing informatics eliminates paperwork which is prone to recording errors
Electronic Health Record (EHR) is a digital record used in recording the history of the patients, an aggregate serving as a multidisciplinary compilation across several sources or sources such as labs, hospitals, pharmacies, clinics, public health agencies and diagnostic imaging, and is available all the time (Chinn, 2010). Ball (2013) pointed out that EHRs offers improved rapid communication and documentation legibility (Baker, 2012). Moreover, it enables direct access to a wide range of data of the patients that is equivalent to going for clinical rounds. I have used EHRs where I work and it is becoming more common in the healthcare setting, and it is evident that they are contributing to the growth of the nursing profession. One of the significant benefits of HER is that it safeguards the confidentiality of thepatients’ health information and security
Some of the challenges that Ball and Hannah (2011) pointed out in EHRs are the challenge of understanding and demonstrating EHRs meaningful use, not having certified technology that is certified and capturing electronic data that is relevant as part of clinical workflows. Moreover, I have come across most health systems and hospitals that continue doubting their ability in meeting new HER standards mandated. This is echoed by a study done by Locsin (2011) which found out in a recent survey that 48% of healthcare leaders feel confident in the readiness of their organizations in meeting stage 1use requirements that are meaningful.39% indicated that they somewhat confident, 3% not confident at all, and 10% didn’t know their readiness level (Locsin, 2011).
That nursing informatics also enable productivity goals and cost savings
Perhaps the greatest benefit I have gathered from nursing informatics is the improvement of efficiency in work. I am able to get the information I need, when I need it and therefore progress the treatment of the patients. Care for patients is made easy because information is available. Further with the ease of work on the nurses and the nursing process in general, burnout and exhaustion become a thing of the past. Nurses are now able to meet their career goals, increase the number of patients in their care and provide the best care for the patients.
Nursing informatics enhance care continuity.
Normally when patients are discharged from hospitals, files are put away. If they chance to visit another hospital or even the same hospital under the care of a different doctor, it takes time to trace the file, understand the history of the patient and therefore make and implement the right care process. With nursing informatics, this will be a problem of the past. Information on patients can be accessed within seconds; care that that previously worked on the patient can be found and continued. With these simple processes, it is much easier to progress treatment of the patients without any drawbacks. Even in a different facility, care continuity is possible because of the ease of sharing information to the benefit of the patient.
Nursing informatics also supports better service delivery to the patients by facilitating true interdisciplinary care
Through nursing informatics the nurse becomes the centre, the bridge between the patient and other clinicians in charge of his treatment. In essence, all communication can be passed through the nurse avoiding incidences where other team members are unaware of what the other is doing. Furthermore, progress reports can be made to the team through the nurse. This is especially an ideal scenario where patients are getting discharged. The nurse simply needs to coordinate communication with the team, understand the requirements of the discharge from each member and then transition the patient out of hospital care.


Nursing informatics employs a variety of tools to make the nursing process much easier and simpler. For the patients it means better and faster service.  The nurses do not need to write down notes with every round, trace the note with much difficulty before administering care. Nursing informatics allows the nurses to record vital data in the present and share the information easily. Of course with the introduction of nursing informatics, the role of the nurses and the process of nursing itself is likely to undergo changes. The changes may bring about temporary challenges for the nurses, but such challenges can be easily overcome. Once mastered, nursing informatics can completely overhaul the nursing profession making it a profession renowned for efficient and quality. It is also important to note that the systems developed for nursing informatics are easy to master and quite user friendly. They do not take attention away from the patient; in fact they are more likely to bring focus on the patients.



American Nurses Association. (2010). Nursing: Scope and standards of practice. Silver Spring, Md: American Nurses Association.
Baker, J. D. (2012). Nursing informatics. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders.
Ball, M. J. (2013). Nursing informatics: Where caring and technology meet. New York: Springer-Verlag.
Ball, M. J., & Hannah, K. J. (2011). Nursing informatics: Where technology and caring meet. London: Springer.
Carty, B. (2012). Nursing informatics: Education for practice. New York: Springer.
Chinn, P. L. (2010). Nursing informatics. Frederick, Md: Aspen Publishers.
Locsin, R. C. (2011). Advancing technology, caring, and nursing. Westport, Conn: Auburn House.
Saba, V. K., & McCormick, K. A. (2011). Essentials of nursing informatics. New York: McGraw-Hill, Medical Pub. Division.
Wainwright, P. (2014). Nursing informatics. Edinburgh [England: Churchill Livinsgtone.
Watson, J. (2012). Assessing and measuring caring in nursing and health science. New York: Springer Pub.

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