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Nursing Informatic Proposal
The idea that technology continues to transform many sectors in the world is no surprise to anyone. Among these revolutions resulting from technology is healthcare that has realized an improvement in patient care. From the use of robotic arms that help undertake surgery to others that help dispense medicines, the integration of technology in many medical applications can no longer be overlooked. Another area that has had great use of technology is the health records where patient data has to be kept safe and tracked at all times, even in instances where a patient is referred to another facility (Ben-Assuli, 2015). Despite these many benefits, the human element cannot be ignored as it is humans that control many technology systems in healthcare. As a way of improving patient care efficiency in the organization, this essay seeks to propose an informatics project that can be used to achieve the different dimensions of this efficiency. Other factors surrounding the project, such as the relevant stakeholders involved, the specific patient outcomes, and the technology required to improve the project, will also be highlighted.
Our organization has, for a long time, relied on paper-based records in keeping patient data as well as general information concerning the organization. The use of this kind of method is quite unreliable, as it is not easy to manage the patient’s prescriptions. The reason for this difficulty is the inability of such records to be consolidated among different health specialists and laboratories during testing. On the contrary, the use of an electronic health record system will make the management of patient records not only safe but also easier. The patients will not have to summarize their medical past records, which is especially stressful in times of emergencies. Furthermore, when parents relocate, they don’t have to remember the names of their previous pediatricians or the previous records used during immunization.
This project, therefore, proposes the installation of an electronic health record system as a way of ensuring patient data, including past medical records, can be retrieved with a lot of ease. When a person enters a medical facility, upon issuance of name or identity document, the attending staff will quickly access all the medical records concerning the patient. This implies that there is less paperwork and faster delivery of service to the clients that visit the organization.
Stakeholders impacted by the project
There is a relatively big group of people that directly benefit from the project. The greatest beneficiary will be the patients whose medical records will be expected to be easily accessed through the electronic record system. Another stakeholder that will be impacted by the project is the medical practitioners whose mandate will be to retrieve patient data with ease. They will thus have to be trained on how the system works since they will be directly involved in its implementation. The recipients of the service are also main stakeholders in that they can opt to support it or reject the whole idea of EHR fully. The adoption of the system, however, is for their own good.
The informatics team of the healthcare facility forms the biggest group of stakeholders since they are the custodians of the technology. If they are able to apply the technological system in the best way possible, it will be definite that they can train other medical providers on how best to integrate the system in service delivery. The informatics team will also have to understand the details of the system, especially on how it is to be maintained and proper use of the software.
It will be negligent to avoid mentioning that the organization’s management is the central focus for the integration of the system in its healthcare services. If they buy the idea, they will definitely invest in it for the benefit of the patient. The outcome of this investment is that they will save on the costs used in undertaking the paperwork as well as cut down on the number of employees that have to be in the organization for the manual system to be well implemented. The consequence of reducing the number of such employees is a reduction in the costs used to run the organization.
There are many benefits that a patient will receive when the electronic health record system is fully implemented. First and foremost, EHR helps reduce the medical errors that most providers make as a result of a mix up in patient data. In the use of a manual record-keeping system, there is a possibility of the mismatch of one’s past medical records, which implies that wrong medical prescriptions can be given to a patient. The use of the proposed system, however, ensures that patient data is well kept, and a proper follow-up is done whenever referrals are undertaken. There will thus reduce the chances of experiencing mix up in patient data. The reduced errors mean the patient is guaranteed quality care as per their medical condition.
Other than helping reduce medical errors, there is improved care coordination when an electronic health record system is used. This is because all the healthcare providers that are part of the medical team can easily access the records of the patient and even share it freely with the other team members. By doing so, medical professionals can easily engage each other on how to improve the healthcare condition at hand or how to communicate with the patients so as to keep them in the decision-making process. This is critical as it ensures quality care at all times (Mold, Lusignan, Sheikh, Majeed, Wyatt, Quinn, & Kataria, 2015).
Electronic health record systems are, at times, equipped with drug-drug or drug-allergy checks, which help reduce the adverse effects associated with medication outcomes and hence provide better and safer care. On the overall, the technology will ensure that there is improved testing, diagnosis as well as treatment decisions. To the organization, the components inbuilt in the electronic health record system help improve real-time reporting of the minor changes that the patient is going through and hence, easy for monitoring medical scenarios.
The technology Required For Project Implementation
The transition from paper to EHR system will need the piecing together of many technologies, with some being software and others being hardware. However, before the putting together begins, the general EHR implementation steps which include creating a team for implementation, software configuration, identifying the hardware requirements, relocating the data, undertaking optimization of the workflow, undertaking the layout of the room and finally initiating the training plan have to be considered.
A HIPAA risk assessment will be undertaken when configuring the software. Some of the elements needed to make the software are the order entries which are normally computerized, the protocols for treatment, standing orders, default settings for the history of the patient, consent forms as well as billing among others (Campanella, Lovato, Marone, Fallacara, Mancuso, Ricciardi & Specchia, 2015). The software can again be modified at any time to include more information as the need arises. Some of such information is the customized information for a health specialist and settings for medical management. The system hardware to be purchased, that is, server and network will depend on the kind of electronic health record system that has been purchased. It is important however that an IT service company be subcontracted to give the required details concerning the hardware.
Project team by roles
The implementation of an electronic health record system requires a big team undertaking different roles. The first person is the nurse informacist, whose mandate is to link the application aspects of technology in nursing. The person will be in charge of training other professionals on how to utilize the technology in the management and processing of electronic patient data (Singh & Sittig, 2016). As a lead physician, his/ her mandate will also involve guiding the organization in the whole implementation process by acting as the link between the administration, front line officers as well as the technical team.
The project manager will also be part of the team, and he will be expected to work closely with the person who supplies the system/ the vendor as well as the staff to ensure that all stakeholders work within their stipulated timelines.
Another role will be for the lead super user who is a person that functions as an in-house expert in the use of the electronic health record system. His mandate will be to configure the software and come up with usable templates as well as standard operating procedures to be followed by other users.