Ways in Which Nursing Informatics Contribute to Improving Best Practices

Updated on March 16, 2023

Healthcare providers are constantly trying to improve the delivery of services. This process can be challenging to regulate and often involves many intricate paths to success.

Various innovations in this area provide a more holistic approach and address issues in multiple ways. These innovations attempt to transform hospital settings into culturally sensitive environments and create positive changes on the individual level with better communication.

For instance, nurses can use text messages and social media while providing additional support within local and global communities. Read on to learn how nursing informatics contributes to improving best practices in healthcare.

Nursing informatics

Nursing informatics is an emerging academic discipline of science and engineering associated with collecting, organizing, analyzing, evaluating, interpreting, sharing and using healthcare data. It is essential to improving patient care. For example, nurses can access medical records by giving patients an access card to swipe through a device in their home or hospital. 

Nurses can help prescriptive information be more accurate by using computers to create databases from information on disease symptoms or possible drug interactions. They can troubleshoot and improve patient flow at a local emergency department by analyzing real-time data on each customer’s electronic medical record before entering the waiting room.

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Aspects of improvement in healthcare environments

Here are some of the elements that improve healthcare environments:

  • Patient/staff satisfaction

Improved patient/staff satisfaction through job enrichment can lead to increased care and enhanced quality of life. Improving satisfaction should be a priority in healthcare environments. It is achievable by increasing the quality of care, providing better work and rest environments, and increasing job satisfaction for staff.

  • Patient experience

Enhancing the patient experience should be a priority, as it can help improve patient outcomes. It is achievable by providing better information and support, improving communication between staff and patients and providing more effective treatments.

Patient experience is commonly used to determine patients’ satisfaction with their care. It can be helpful when deciding whether to reward staff for performance and improving services.

  • Communication

Communication is vital in any healthcare environment. Improving communication between staff, patients and their families can help reduce misunderstandings and improve patient outcomes. It is achievable through better training of staff and improved communication strategies. 

The communication environment is the social and physical context within which a patient communicates. 

It can impact whether a patient feels comfortable communicating, and it can affect how staff communicates with patients. Encouraging patients to share, and providing adequate support for them to do so, may improve health outcomes as well as overall satisfaction with care.

  • Awareness

Increasing awareness of healthcare options, treatments and services can help improve patient outcomes. It is achievable through better education and training for staff and by providing information to patients and their families.

Many healthcare providers and health systems have a diversity of different types of practices and services. Healthcare professionals must work with patients from all cultural, gender and religious backgrounds. 

Linguistically competent communication is essential for effective healthcare delivery. It may include using appropriate medical terminology and using and understanding the jargon. 

  • Technology

Utilizing technology can help improve patient outcomes, reduce errors and improve efficiency. It is achievable through technologies such as electronic medical records and automated systems.

Maintaining the proper medical records is vital for safe and effective treatment as well as research and patient safety. For healthcare providers to meet patient needs, they must be able to review medical records before beginning a new treatment plan. 

Innovative approaches to providing holistic care

Here are some key areas of innovative approaches to providing holistic care:

  • Focusing on preventive care

Preventive care can help to reduce the risk of illness and improve patient outcomes. Healthcare organizations can focus on preventative care by educating about healthy lifestyle choices and offering screenings and immunizations.

Assessing your needs will help you make the best choices for your loved one’s home care needs. It will help prevent over-reliance on expensive and constricting care while finding the most suitable answer.

  • Improving communication

Effective communication ensures that patients, families and healthcare providers are all on the same page and that care plans are correctly implemented. It can include using patient portals, secure messaging and remote monitoring.

Patient portals are services provided on the web that allow patients to interact and communicate with their healthcare providers. These include websites, mobile applications and portals within healthcare providers’ offices.

  • Collaborative care

Collaborative care is an approach that involves multiple disciplines working together to provide holistic care for patients. This approach can include physicians, nurses, social workers, case managers and other providers. 

Providers need to work together to ensure that the patient’s needs are addressed from a holistic perspective. The provider must address the patient’s social, spiritual and emotional needs, as well as their physical health. Collaborative care is an excellent approach because it promotes communication between the disciplines.

  • Implementing patient-centered care 

Patient-centered care is a model that puts the patient at the center of their care and focuses on meeting their individual needs. This approach can help improve patient outcomes, reduce costs and increase satisfaction.

Improving the efficiency of care delivery and reducing care costs is achievable by improving healthcare organizations’ ability to provide services based on a patient’s needs, preferences and circumstances.

  • Cultivating a culture of safety

A culture of safety is an environment where patient safety is a priority. It can include developing and implementing policies and procedures to reduce medical errors and providing ongoing training and education for healthcare providers. A culture of safety is a cultural change that needs to happen within a healthcare system. The top administrators can create this at a facility through effective communication with all staff. 

Nurses, pharmacists, physicians and other healthcare providers are often trained in evidence-based practice. However, training should also include recognizing the need for teamwork. 

There should also be an emphasis on providing quality care for every patient. Developing a culture of safety can result in better collaboration among healthcare providers and staff members as well as improvement in outcomes for patients.

  • Improving access to care

One way to improve access to care is to reduce the associated costs, such as eliminating financial barriers and ensuring everyone has access to affordable care. It can include increasing funding for community health clinics, expanding Medicaid coverage and offering incentives for providers to serve underserved populations.

One can solve the problem of doctors’ workloads by simplifying regulations and testing new techniques, such as telemedicine, which allows patients to consult with physicians remotely.

How does nursing informatics contribute to improving best practices?

Here are some main ways nursing informatics contributes to improving best practices:

  • Using data for evidence-based practice

Nursing informatics uses an interdisciplinary approach to improving healthcare by optimizing the use of technology. Nurses can use it to improve the quality and efficiency of the delivery of healthcare services. 

It contributes to improved best practices for patient care through data for evidence-based practice. It delivers nursing care through various mediums, including mobile devices and the internet. 

To prevent healthcare errors, informatics is vital to implement evidence-based practice. It is increasingly being adopted in healthcare facilities, including hospitals, clinics and nursing homes.

The nursing discipline is fundamentally changing to include the concepts and technologies of information management. The profession must embrace these changes as they are essential to providing high-quality care within our evolving healthcare system, especially given the surge in new technologies.

  • Applying information technologies

Nursing informatics uses information technologies such as electronic health records, medical images, telemedicine technology and remote sensor monitoring systems to manage patients. 

It could include taking better control over drug safety risks, helping hospitals save on costs by keeping track of inventory more efficiently or identifying patients at risk more quickly. It helps nursing staff achieve nurses’ goals and clinical objectives, making the best use of clinical data.

Nursing informatics helps nurses find information, plan clinical care outcomes and evaluate practices for quality improvement by providing data access and analysis tools, facilitating communication and decision making between all nursing staff.

It can also help improve bedside healthcare processes such as patient monitoring, assistance with wound healing or teaching challenging procedures such as intubation to trainees.

  • Evaluating the quality of care

In the modern healthcare setting, informatics can help evaluate the quality of care. For example, nursing informatics specialists could help improve communication and identify potential errors in care that may occur before they happen.

Specialists may achieve this by identifying patient chart problems from nursing notes and doctor orders. Another aspect of nursing informatics is to evaluate how nursing care is being delivered. The goal here is to ensure that patients receive the care they need and that errors are not made during the delivery of their treatment. 

Informatics can do this by providing nurse educators with a database for lesson plans on specific ailments. It can also suggest ways that students can improve their assessment skills or provide them with the correct protocols for treating certain conditions.

  • Evaluation of individuals 

Patients are evaluated individually, specifically regarding the quality of their care. For instance, a nurse informatics specialist can improve the quality of nursing care by ensuring no errors during clinical admissions, such as handing out medications or procedures. That way, the patient will be healthier and live longer.

In addition, if the patient has a disability, it may be necessary for the nurse to assess which equipment will benefit them during their stay in the hospital. As a result, continuous assessment of nursing care must continue to evolve so that patients can receive better care.

It is also essential for nurses to understand the healthcare trends and have knowledge of cures and procedures regarding a specific illness. By doing so, they can provide better care when treating their patients using what they know.

  • Development of products

Systems use nursing informatics to develop products and strategies that could benefit patients and healthcare providers. For example, a system could monitor a patient’s temperature in an intensive care unit. 

That way, nurses can monitor the patient’s condition more closely, and the doctors involved will have more accurate data to make more informed decisions about treatment. It would also provide patients with a better quality of care. 

  • Quality of care 

Nursing informatics ensures that the quality of patient care is as high as possible. It would involve examining and administering a patient’s medications correctly while considering individual medication differences.

Nurses must also educate patients and family members on administering medications appropriately. Using computers in the nursing field will help deliver quality patient care. 

A primary benefit of nursing informatics is that it involves collecting and disseminating information to promote quality in healthcare.

  • Scientific research

One can use nursing informatics when conducting scientific research, especially in health economics and healthcare administration. By using data from electronic health records, for example, nursing informatics specialists could aid in collecting longitudinal data necessary for scientific research precisely to predict patient outcomes.

Nursing informatics can support healthcare research through computerized data analysis and assist in understanding issues that require further investigation.

The International Classification of Diseases (ICD) codes can apply to collect, display and store information regarding nursing research. Although the codes are not necessarily part of nursing informatics, this system is essential when completing the information on patient medical records.

Final thoughts

Nursing informatics is a multifaceted field with many uses and benefits. Not only does it allow nurses to share information in new ways, but it is also a fundamental basis for the future of nursing practice.

Nursing informatics has revolutionized the field of nursing, providing healthcare providers with countless new possibilities for working together to create better patient care. This technology will undoubtedly change the face of medicine as we know it. Healthcare professionals working in this industry must take an active role in ensuring that these changes are for the betterment of their patients and society.

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The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.