availability of new technologies in nursing

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New technology in nursing are becoming more widely available. These innovations have an effect on nursing practice. Electronic health records (EHR) help to reduce healthcare costs, solve workforce issues, and improve care quality, among other things. It is critical that nurses and other health workers use the technology in the way that the developers intended. Patients should benefit from new technology advancements in healthcare.

There are numerous frameworks and methods for introducing technologies into nursing practice that are most effective. The majority of models have the same planning sequence. First, to maximize the chances of success, there should be a systematic introduction of the innovations. There should be the tailoring of the innovation strategy to the determinants that assist in the facilitation of the process (Fleuren, Wiefferink, & Paulussen, 2004). Four main stages in that are critical in the innovation process. The dissemination stage ensures that every professional receives the innovation supplies. The professional may develop either a negative or a positive attitude towards the change. The implementation phase entails the nurse using the innovation well in the daily practices and practices in the delivery of their duties. In the continuation stage, the use of the innovation becomes a routine practice. These four steps may determine the level of success of the new change brought by the technologies. A variety of factors or determinants can have an effect on the transition between the stages (Fleuren, Wiefferink, & Paulussen, 2004). First, the innovation itself is a critical determinant in the process. The relative benefits of the EHR in nursing practice may influence its adoption. Its perceived complexity may determine if it will be used successfully or not. For instance, nurses are more likely to use new technologies that they perceive to have easy usage and have simple interfaces. Secondly, the user of the technology determines its level of adoption. For instance, nursing staff who have the skills and knowledge that are required for the successful use of the EHR are more likely to adopt it. If they perceive that the outcomes of the deployment of the technologies will assist them in the nursing practice, then they are more likely to embrace it. In addition, the support by the management and other colleagues may impact their success in using the EHR technologies in their nursing practice. Third, the organizational aspects including staff turnover, the allocation of resources, staff capacity, and the institutional decision-making process may determine the uptake of new technologies (Fleuren, Wiefferink, & Paulussen, 2004). For instance, staff availability may increase the rate of adoption of the technologies. The socio-political aspects also influence the rate of uptake. In nursing practice, the cooperation of patients is crucial in determining the success of the EHR systems. It is more likely to e successful if there is patient satisfaction. The rules and legislation that guide the use of the systems also determine the uptake levels (Fleuren, Wiefferink, & Paulussen, 2004). The management should devise rules that make the overall process efficient and align to the goals of health care delivery. The availability of structural funds can also determine the willingness of nurses and patients to cooperate.

Although nurses have a significant job in the process, they may need the support of other staff in healthcare facilities. Therefore, it is necessary to take into account the organizational characteristics and the socio-political context of their operations. User perceptions are also crucial, and the management should not ignore them. For instance, if nurses feel that the new EHR system will be more time consuming and therefore lead to inefficiencies in their practice, it may be essential to educate them and hence ensure that adoption goes on smoothly. An in-depth knowledge of the important determinants is necessary. The process could fail if the management does not conduct a determinant analysis or if they do not take them determinants into account. A possible reason for failure may be the focus on irrelevant determinants (Fleuren, Wiefferink, & Paulussen, 2004). The inappropriate choice of strategies in steering the determinants of the process may also contribute to failure. For instances, training may be a solution to the lack of knowledge by nurses on how to use the EHR systems. However, training may not be a solution if time constraint is the issue.

Qualities of innovation and Rate of Adoption

Rogers (2003) proposed five qualities that a good innovation system should encompass. The attributes assist in decreasing the uncertainty of an innovation and therefore leads to the overall success of the innovation-diffusion process. The qualities of innovation are significant predictors of the rate of adoption (Rogers, 2003). Other predictors are communication channels, innovation-decision type, social system, and change agents.

The first quality is the relative advantage. It is the extent to which there is a perception that an innovation is better than the previous one. Some of its elements are the social status motivation aspects and costs of the innovation. There are two categories of innovations: incremental and preventive. A new idea that one may adopt to minimize the probability of some unwanted future event is preventive innovation. Incremental innovations are beneficial within a short period. Incentives may be necessary to speed the uptake process (Rogers, 2003). In nursing practice, an evaluation of the relative advantage of the EHR system over an older system for keeping patient records may be necessary.

Compatibility ensures that there is consistency between the innovation and the current values, needs of potential adopters, and experiences. For instance, lack of compatibility between the EHR system and the needs of nurses and patients may have an adverse impact on the rate of adoption. If, however, there is consistency between the needs of the system and the user needs, there may be a significant reduction in the rate of uncertainty (Rogers, 2003). A critical part of compatibility also entails the naming of the innovative application as it may influence the perception of the users. The potential adopter should find it meaningful in the execution of his or her duties.

The complexity attribute entails the perception of the relative difficulty or ease of understanding and use of technology. It negatively correlates with the rate of adoption (Rogers, 2003). Therefore, too much complexity in an innovation hinders its adoption. Technological innovation in EHR might make nursing staff make changes in their methodologies of keeping patient records and integrate the new technologies. If they are user-friendly, then it may lead to a successful deployment and adoption of the system.

Trialability is the extent to which there may be experimentations of the innovation on a limited basis. It may be crucial for the adopter to explore the capabilities of the technologies. It positively correlates with the rate of adoption. Therefore, the more frequent the experimentations, the faster is the adoption rate. It is possible for reinvention to occur during the process of the trials. The adopter may make modifications of the technologies to suit his use. Later adopters may use the vicarious trials to increase their chances of success. The early adopters derive more benefit from the trialability attribute than later ones (Rogers, 2003).

Observability is another crucial quality that Rogers (2003) emphasized. It is the degree of visibility of an innovation to other people and stakeholders. It has a positive correlation with the adoption rates. One of the critical motivational issues that influence the adoption rates and diffusion of technologies is role modeling.

In summary, the technologies that have more compatibility, relative advantage, trialability, simplicity, and observability will have faster rates of diffusion and adoption than other innovations. There is some level of difficulty in adopting any new idea, even if it has obvious advantages, and therefore it is important to consider all the attributes for a faster innovation-diffusion process. All the factors are critical in influencing new users.


Electronic Health Records is an important way of automating record keeping in health institutions. It is important for the management to evaluate the benefits of a new system in comparison to others. Since nursing staff and other healthcare professionals are essential for the successful utilization of the technological innovations, it is necessary to involve them in the process. In particular, it is important that they are equipped with the knowledge and skills of using the system and ensure that they are comfortable in using it.


Fleuren, M., Wiefferink, C.H, & Paulussen, T.G. (2004). Determinants of innovation within

health care organizations: Literature review and Delphi-study. International Journal of

Quality Health Care, 16,107-123.

Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of Innovations. New York, NY: Free Press

May 24, 2023


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