|Type of paper:
|Health and Social Care Medicine Healthcare
Healthcare informatics is also known as health information systems that use information technology to analyze and organize health records to improve healthcare results. The system deals with methods, resources, and devices to utilize storage, acquisition, use, and retrieval of information in medicine and health. Healthcare informatics has undergone continuous improvement over the years hence providing efficiency to nurses and general healthcare facilities. This paper analyses the future of healthcare informatics.
Role and Future of Informatics Nurse
According to Sawyer et al. (2018), the major role of informatics nurses is to combine technical knowledge with their clinical skills to build systems that significantly improve the quality of patient care. The role of technology in healthcare settings is growing to be one of the most vital aspects. Most hospitals now are adopting the use of technological systems such as Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and computerized coding, which requires dedicated information technology staff who are familiar with both advanced technology and medicine. Thus, an informatics nurse can become a leader in the IT team.
In their delivery, informatics nurses use data to improve patient care, whereby they analyze new trends, observe any consistent errors while implementing new and efficient systems. This is made possible by the advanced technology available today. Although they perform a similar job description, informatics nurses may have different titles based on their employers. Such titles include nurse informatics, nursing informatics specialist, clinical informatics coordinator, clinical analyst, and IT, clinical nurse. An informatics nurse works closely with computer systems and patient data.
Here, they act as a point of communication between IT staff and clinical nurses. They report technological, and new systems feedback directly from the end-users daily. The nurses can also be assigned other duties such as system development, clinical staff training, and quality control. Other common roles of the informatics nurses in a day, including monitoring the success of quality initiatives, project management, examine clinical statistics, optimize the performance of the system, and write policies.
The nursing informatics is showing positive future trends following the currently registered success. One of the future anticipated trends is that increased connectivity in healthcare systems will advance sharing or knowledge and collaboration between doctors, patients, and hospitals on a global level (Sawyer et al., 2018). The global connectivity will be an advantage in the advancement of medical study, aid in treating, diagnosing, curing, and preventing diseases and epidemics globally. Faster systems will be needed to make this dream come true. Another major future trend to watch out for is supported patient data analysis.
Sawyer et al. (2018) state that big data science is one of the key areas that will benefit from the advancement of future technology. In nursing informatics, big data science aims at analyzing large sets of data to reveal the hidden trends and patterns hence promoting quality of care and patient health. The application of big data science in nursing informatics, for example, processing of natural language data harmonization and data mining, will also contribute to patient data analyses.
The use of these techniques in nursing informatics helps with better insights. Consequently, better decision-making processes are achieved hence improving the delivery of healthcare and personalized medicine. These future trends are very dependent on advanced technological systems. As days go on, more inventions and innovations are made by the current technology. Hospitals systems will be improved with future technology, which is expected to be faster and more efficient in achieving these trends.
Connected health is a model or web of communication intelligent and actionable understanding to drive more integrated and better care and health results (Dykes et al., 2017). In this conceptual model for the management of health, services, interventions, or devices are customized according to the patients’ needs. Health data is then shared in a way that the patient receives healthcare most efficiently and proactively possible. The stakeholders of this process are connected by the matter of pertinent information regarding the status of the patient, timely sharing, and demonstration of accurate data via the efficient use of data, communication platforms, people, and devices.
One of the examples of connected data is remote monitoring, which is an initiative that offers patients with huge security, particularly for patients who undergo dialysis from home. One of the benefits of using this type of connected health model is that it allows the exchange of data from the patient to monitoring healthcare workers in real-time. The model allows the patient to use a mobile device to perform and send routine tests to the physician involved. Another benefit is that remote monitoring improves the lifestyle of patients.
Application of this model in a chronic disease patient can help in the management of the disease hence an improvement of the patient’s lifestyle. The third and fourth benefits are that it makes care more available and that it saves money. Four drawbacks of using remote monitoring are that it is not accessible for every patient, especially those in rural areas, the doctors and patients are skeptical towards using it, the system requires additional healthcare software which could be expensive and that it may not be very reliable.
The second example of connected health is the use of telehealth. This is the application of communication technologies and digital information such as video calls, mobile devices, and computers. Dykes et al (2017) states that one benefit of using telehealth is that patients can use it while at the comfort of their homes. Another benefit is that it is cost-efficient as they may involve using mobile devices to give updates hence saving travel charges.
The last benefit is that telehealth keeps patients engaged hence providing better health results. Telehealth has several disadvantages, amongst them being that telehealth has industry and regulatory barriers, limitation of physical examination, and that telemedicine technology and equipment are expensive. Rounding tool is the third example of connected health, which enables healthcare providers to care for patients while they are making rounds or are on the go. The benefits of using rounding tools are that they are accountable, consistent, and easy in the collection of data. Limitations are that they are expensive and may not be very accurate.
Impact of Informatics to the Public Health
Informatics has significantly improved public health in many ways. The application of advanced technology has ensured that better patient care is provided within a stipulated time. Also, diagnosis, prevention, outcomes are part of huge impacts on public health. One of the major ways public health has been impacted by informatics is the improvement of outcomes. Electronic medical records provide high quality and safer care alongside coordinated medical teams, data hence fastening diagnosis and minimizing medical errors (Albert & Ergas, 2018).
Nurses and doctors increase their efficiency hence acquiring more time to spend with the patients, automate previous tasks and jobs, thus saving time and money. Thanks to technology, hospitals are undergoing a massive renovation, and informatics is playing the part of improving care and coordination. A significant example of public health impact is time saved in the treatment of patients due to easy retrieval of patient history from computers.
Public health has been improved by access to large data about diseases. Healthcare providers have access to diseases trends, drug efficiency, management of disease symptoms, and other factors involved (Albert & Ergas, 2018). Informatics helps control diseases while improving the preparedness of outbreak situations such as viruses and flu. Informatics date aid public health organizations to place prevention measures, watch for demographic or geographical changes, and report relevant information to the concerned population for awareness.
While the informatics helps predict the spread of diseases over a given population, the public health personnel puts the necessary measures to curb the spread of the disease. For example, through the use of informatics, the World Health Organization predicted the spread of coronavirus and advised the public of the prevention measures to take to curb the spread of the disease. .Informatics has impacted public health through the exchange of knowledge. Health facilities share knowledge about patients, medicines, diseases, and therapies, among other things.
The information can be shared over an unlimited number of times all over the world using technology. Informatics link health practice knowledge with technology skills hence giving the public health organization the ability to access important data. Patient participation is another aspect made possible by informatics.
Patients can access their medical history and recommendations through the use of telehealth hence helping them to take a role in maintaining stable health status. Patients with access to care portals educate themselves about their diagnosis and progress. They also learn how to ensure that they will not suffer similar health conditions as before. Health informatics allows the public to feel like they are a valuable part of a large healthcare team.
An excellent example is healthcare applications that are installed in patients’ phones. In these apps, all patient information is written and is updated now and then. Also, the patient can record their progress and update their doctors about their recovery. Also, the doctors have the leverage of keeping a track of patients’ health while they are at home.
Healthcare informatics combines clinical and technological knowledge, thus allowing various improvements in healthcare provision. Informatics nurse keeps close records of patients’ progress and makes the data available upon need. The future of informatics is very bright as it increased efficiency and speed towards giving better outcomes. Connected health plays a significant role in the healthcare system by ensuring that patients and doctors keep in touch despite being at a distant.
These connected health models have their benefits and drawbacks during the provision of care. Informatics has impacted public health positively by allowing healthcare providers to stay ahead of diseases. With informatics, diagnosis, treatment, and even prevention measures are easily accessed. The public also gets important knowledge regarding their health and possible outbreaks and diseases. Informatics has saved the public health both time and resources hence making provision of healthcare more efficient.
Albert, S. P., & Ergas, R. (2018). Public Health Impact of Syndromic Surveillance Data—A Literature Survey. Online Journal of Public Health Informatics, 10(1). https://journals.uic.edu/ojs/index.php/ojphi/article/view/8645
Dykes, D. E., Curry, A. D., & Frommeyer, A. X. (2017). U.S. Patent No. 9,811,636. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. https://patents.google.com/patent/US9811636B2/en
Sawyerr, C., Stevens, K., Martin, S., & JD, C. (2018). SINI 2018: The Security Informatics Nurse Specialist Role. https://archive.hshsl.umaryland.edu/bitstream/handle/10713/10101/Sawyerr_InformaticsNurse_SINI2018.pdf?sequence=1
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