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NURS FPX 5005 Assessment 4 Analysis of Technology in Nursing Practice

Assessment 4: Analysis of Technology in Nursing Practice

Name

Capella University

Introduction to Nursing Research of Ethics & Technology

Prof. Name

June 19th 2024

Analysis of Technology in Nursing Practice

Patient care technology refers to the various tools and systems used in healthcare settings to monitor, diagnose, and treat patients, enhancing the quality and efficiency of care delivery (Mohammad et al., 2023). This report examines Electronic Health Records (EHRs), focusing on their functions, the data they generate, and their impact on nursing practice. By evaluating the advantages of EHRs, methods of data communication, and necessary safety controls, this analysis aims to highlight how integrating advanced technologies like EHRs can improve patient outcomes and support evidence-based nursing practice. EHRs centralize patient information, streamline access to critical data, and facilitate better care coordination, making them an essential component of modern healthcare (Shan et al., 2023).

Influence of Electronic Health Records on Patient Care and Nursing Practice

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) have dramatically altered the dynamics of patient care and the nursing profession by centralizing patient information and streamlining access to critical data. EHRs enhance patient care delivery by providing real-time access to comprehensive patient histories, lab results, and medication records (Kim et al., 2024). This immediate availability of information reduces the likelihood of medical errors and improves the accuracy of diagnoses and treatment plans. EHRs facilitate better care coordination and communication within the healthcare team for nurses. Nurses can quickly document patient interactions, update care plans, and monitor patient progress, ensuring continuity of care (Mohammad et al., 2023). The technology also supports clinical decision-making by integrating evidence-based guidelines and alerts, which help nurses promptly identify potential issues such as drug interactions or abnormal lab results.

However, the implementation of EHRs also presents challenges. Nurses need thorough training to navigate and utilize EHR systems effectively. The increased documentation workload can sometimes detract from direct patient care. Data security and patient confidentiality are paramount, requiring robust safeguards to comply with regulations such as HIPAA (Moy et al., 2021). EHRs significantly enhance patient care delivery by improving data accuracy, accessibility, and clinical decision-making (Peltonen et al., 2023). While there are challenges in implementation and use, the benefits of EHRs in fostering efficient and effective nursing practice are substantial, ultimately leading to better patient outcomes.

Assumptions Underlying the Analysis of Electronic Health Records (EHRs)

The analysis assumes that Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are implemented effectively and that nurses are adequately trained to use them. It presumes that the data entered into EHRs is accurate and timely, providing a reliable basis for clinical decisions (Forde et al., 2023). The analysis also assumes that healthcare institutions have robust cybersecurity measures to protect patient information and that EHR systems are interoperable with other technologies used in patient care. It is assumed that integrating evidence-based guidelines within EHRs enhances clinical decision-making and patient outcomes (Cajander et al., 2022). 

Communication and Evaluation of Data Generated by Electronic Health Records 

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) generate essential data that supports patient care and clinical decision-making (Kim et al., 2024). The data is communicated through secure, interoperable digital platforms, allowing healthcare providers to access real-time patient information. This communication includes automated alerts for abnormal lab results, medication reminders, and patient status updates, crucial for timely and effective interventions. EHRs facilitate seamless data sharing among the interdisciplinary healthcare team via integrated hospital information systems (Upadhyay & Hu, 2022). This system allows physicians, nurses, and other healthcare providers to access and update patient records, ensuring consistent and coordinated care. EHRs facilitate the secure transfer of information between different healthcare institutions, enhancing the continuity of care across various environments.

To evaluate the data generated by EHRs, several criteria must be considered: accuracy, ensuring the data reflects the patient’s true condition; completeness, capturing all necessary information; timeliness, referring to prompt data entry and availability; and relevance, assessing whether the data is pertinent to the clinical context and decision-making processes (Shan et al.,  2023). By addressing these criteria, the effective communication and evaluation of EHR data enhance patient care, ensuring that healthcare providers have access to reliable, comprehensive, and up-to-date information. This capability fosters informed clinical decisions and improves patient outcomes, highlighting the critical role of EHRs in modern healthcare.

Measures and Protections for Ensuring Patient Safety and Privacy

Guaranteeing the protection and privacy of patient information using Electronic Health Records (EHRs) requires robust controls and safeguards. Regulatory frameworks like HIPAA mandate strict measures to protect patient information from unauthorized access and breaches (Moy et al., 2021). Key safeguards include data encryption, which ensures that patient data is securely transmitted and stored, and access controls that limit data access to authorized personnel only (Li et al., 2022). User authentication protocols, such as multi-factor authentication, add a layer of security by verifying the identity of users accessing the system. Regular audit trails and monitoring systems track all access and modifications to patient records, helping promptly identify and respond to suspicious activities.

Training and education of healthcare staff are essential to maintaining patient safety and confidentiality. Staff must be well-versed in data protection protocols, aware of the latest cybersecurity threats, and capable of adhering to best practices in handling patient information (Upadhyay & Hu, 2022). Regular updates and refresher courses ensure that all team members remain vigilant and informed. Administrative controls, such as policies and procedures for data handling, incident response plans, and regular security assessments, bolster the safeguarding of patient data (Heponiemi et al., 2021). These measures ensure a proactive approach to identifying and addressing potential vulnerabilities before they can be exploited. By implementing these comprehensive controls and safeguards, healthcare organizations can maintain the integrity and confidentiality of patient data, ensuring that EHR systems contribute to safe and effective patient care without compromising privacy.

Recognizing Knowledge Limitations and Aspects of Uncertainty

Several areas of knowledge and aspects of ambiguity can impact the effective use and evaluation of Electronic Health Records (EHRs). One major gap is the inconsistent interoperability between different EHR systems, which can hinder seamless data sharing across healthcare facilities (Heponiemi et al., 2021). There needs to be more research on the long-term impact of EHR usage on patient outcomes and healthcare costs. Questions also remain about the effectiveness of current cybersecurity measures in evolving threat landscapes. Further, understanding the impact of EHR-related administrative workload on nursing efficiency and job satisfaction requires more in-depth study (Peltonen et al., 2023). Addressing these gaps with targeted research and policy development could significantly enhance the benefits of EHRs in healthcare.

Enhancing EHR Application Through Evidence-Based Strategies

Implementing evidence-based strategies can significantly improve Electronic Health Records (EHR) application and effectiveness. EBP combines proficiency in clinical practice with the most current empirical research and patient choices (Moy et al., 2021). For EHRs, this means adopting protocols and workflows that are proven to enhance patient outcomes and streamline nursing practice. For instance, research by Shan et al. (2023) supports using standardized data entry templates to reduce errors and improve data accuracy, thus facilitating better clinical decision-making. Incorporating feedback from healthcare professionals and patients into EHR design and updates can also drive improvements in usability and functionality. Regular training sessions based on the latest evidence ensure that nurses and other users remain proficient, minimizing the risk of errors and enhancing overall efficiency. Continuous monitoring and evaluating of EHR performance against evidence-based benchmarks can identify areas for further enhancement (Cajander et al., 2022)

Acknowledging other viewpoints, some stakeholders argue for personalized adaptations of EHR systems to suit specific healthcare settings better or address unique patient needs (Cajander et al., 2022). Others emphasize the balance between technology and maintaining the human aspects of patient care. Effective scholarship and evidence-based information are crucial in developing and refining EHR technologies (Upadhyay & Hu, 2022). They ensure systems are built on solid research foundations, leading to reliable and valid outcomes. This approach optimizes the technology’s application, fosters user trust, and enhances the overall quality of patient care.

NURS FPX 5005 Assessment 4 Analysis of Technology in Nursing Practice Conclusion

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) is a transformative patient care technology that enhances the quality and efficiency of healthcare delivery (Forde et al., 2023). While EHRs significantly improve data accuracy, accessibility, and clinical decision-making, their implementation requires robust training, stringent security measures, and continuous evaluation (Heponiemi et al., 2021). Addressing knowledge gaps and incorporating evidence-based strategies can further optimize EHR application, ensuring it meets diverse healthcare needs while maintaining patient safety and confidentiality. EHRs, when effectively managed, play a crucial role in advancing evidence-based nursing practice and improving patient outcomes. 

NURS FPX 5005 Assessment 4 Analysis of Technology in Nursing Practice References

Cajander, Å., Huvila, I., Salminen, M., Lind, T., & Scandurra, I. (2022). Effects of patient accessible electronic health records on nurses’ work environment: A survey study on expectations in Sweden. BMJ Open, 12(11), e059188. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-059188 

Forde, C., Butcher, D., & Aveyard, H. (2023). An integrative review exploring the impact of electronic health records (EHR) on the quality of nurse-patient interactions and communication. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 79(1), 48–67. https://doi.org/10.1111/jan.15484 

Heponiemi, T., Gluschkoff, K., Vehko, T., Kaihlanen, A. M., Saranto, K., Nissinen, S., Nadav, J., & Kujala, S. (2021). Electronic health record implementations and insufficient training endanger nurses’ well-being: Cross-sectional survey study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 23(12), e27096. https://doi.org/10.2196/27096 

Kim, M. K., Rouphael, C., McMichael, J., Welch, N., & Dasarathy, S. (2024). Challenges in and opportunities for electronic health record-based data analysis and interpretation. Gut and Liver, 18(2), 201–208. https://doi.org/10.5009/gnl230272 

Li, E., Clarke, J., Ashrafian, H., Darzi, A., & Neves, A. L. (2022). The impact of electronic health record interoperability on safety and quality of care in high-income countries: Systematic review. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 24(9), e38144. https://doi.org/10.2196/38144 

Mohammad, F., Freeman, S., Klassen, T., Hemingway, D., & Banner, D. (2023). Impacts of technology use on the workload of registered nurses: A scoping review. Journal of Rehabilitation and Assistive Technologies Engineering, 10, 20556683231180189. https://doi.org/10.1177/20556683231180189 

Moy, A. J., Schwartz, J. M., Chen, R., Sadri, S., Lucas, E., Cato, K. D., & Rossetti, S. C. (2021). Measurement of clinical documentation burden among physicians and nurses using electronic health records: A scoping review. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 28(5), 998–1008. https://doi.org/10.1093/jamia/ocaa325 

Peltonen, L. M., O’Connor, S., Conway, A., Cook, R., Currie, L. M., Goossen, W., Hardiker, N. R., Kinnunen, U. M., Ronquillo, C. E., Topaz, M., & Rotegård, A. K. (2023). Nursing informatics’ contribution to one health. Yearbook of Medical Informatics, 32(1), 65–75. https://doi.org/10.1055/s-0043-1768738 

Shan, Y., Shang, J., Yan, Y., & Ye, X. (2023). Workflow interruption and nurses’ mental workload in electronic health record tasks: An observational study. Nursing, 22(1), 63. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12912-023-01209-9 

Upadhyay, S., & Hu, H. F. (2022). A qualitative analysis of the impact of electronic health records (EHR) on healthcare quality and safety: Clinicians’ lived experiences. Health Services Insights, 15, 11786329211070722. https://doi.org/10.1177/11786329211070722 

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