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Technology advancements are widespread in the nursing profession, particularly in areas of clinical care. Some of these modifications are aimed at enhancing patient happiness and outcomes. Wager et al. (2017) ascribe the observed changes to technological advancements and their coincidental impacts. The essay will concentrate on current and future technologies utilized by nurses in clinical practice, as well as their effects on professional reflection, clinical settings, information gathering, and record keeping in the nursing sector.
On a worldwide scale, the ongoing desire for inexpensive care has fuelled efforts to make healthcare more efficient and economical to all people. In the United States of America, for instance, the nurses have been continually ranked as topmost trusted professionals. This is due to their improved awareness that to achieve better service delivery in the nursing profession, proactive steps which necessitate change more so in the technological front are necessary. The American Academy of Nursing Workforce Commission acknowledges the importance of an efficient technology in the pursuit of the improvement of effectiveness and safety among the American nurses. The technology used by the committee dubbed Technology Drill Down and funded by the Robert Johnson Foundation helped in addressing the challenge of nurse shortage and the workflow inefficiencies. This was in the process of attaining a more efficient and safer care. Most of the units considered had electronic documentation, storage systems, and telecommunication equipment. The nurses were designated to implement technological solutions to perform regulatory functions, provision of immediate access to resources and to automate all the tasks (Johnson, 2014). This might change in 2025 when storage of data and other critical information is expected to be fully digitized. For instance, more sophisticated MRIs and other devices used in hospitals to store and divulge information are likely to take over the analog form of record keeping like filing and retrieval.
The keeping of electronic records for the elderly patients is quite critical as they account for more than one-third of the critical attention hospitalization cases, and spend quite a significant period in the hospital (Johnson, 2014). Thus in the coming years, the hospital electronic health record system will ultimately transform the nursing profession. The Acute Care for Elders sets the unit orders for the older patients especially the ones with chronic diseases such as heart failure, pulmonary disease, hip fracture and pneumonia. It ensures that the older adults receive the maximum level of care and medication as soon as possible and with expedient consultation with the experts. The system ensures that there is the integration of the service delivery model implemented at all points of hospitalization. Proper electronic record keeping initiates and promotes the use of appropriate attention in the emergency department, and it enhances the real-time coordination of the patient care. The system ensures that there is a linked communication system, the use of the email notifications (Johnson, 2014).
As part of the method of introducing the change process in the hospital setups in the U.S., the government spearheaded the electronic health records system in the year 2009, and it proved quite receptive. By July 2013, sixty percent of the eligible professionals participated while eighty-one percent of the eligible hospitals participated in the program voluntarily (Lin, 2017). The system was an integral part of the pursuit of quality health care and efficiency improvements. It was meant to reduce the duplication of tests and procedures and promote information sharing among the different systems in the hospital or health care setup. The system is patient-centered, and gives the providers ability to deliver on the best practices, reduces error, readmissions, less costly and leaves the patients with improved health (Lin, 2017).
The improvement of quality and safety is a key aspect of the change process. It should take both the technical and behavioral approaches in addressing the issue of quality and safety. Nursing professionals need to get enlightened on reliability, safety, communication, collaboration, and teamwork. The harnessing of skills and knowledge, safe processes and appropriate use of technology is essential for the accomplishment of better organizations. The embracing of technology by nurses will automatically get them to be more efficient and effective. The technology has revolutionized the way the diagnosis is made to ascertain the illness. The genomics and genetics, more accurate diagnostic and treatment tools, the three-dimensional printing, robotics, biometrics and the computerized physician entry order and the clinical support decisions are some of the contemporary applications of technology change in nursing (Huston, 2013). In modern day nursing, genetic testing is getting used for various reasons. One, the ability to be able to predict the possible gene mutation that may put an individual at a risk of getting sickle-cell anemia or cancer. Secondly, is the prenatal screening to be able to diagnose conditions in the utero. Thirdly, the ability to determine with some certainty the carrier status or gene mutation that can be carried on to the child. Fourth, capacity to assess the potential benefits accrued to a particular type of treatment about cancer and the newborn screening.
In the future, the application of genetics and genomics is likely to alter the health care from the current state into one of defensive, genomic-reliant, diagnostic in which the sick will get treatment for the possible conditions they will most likely be suffering from compared to the current situation where people get less attention whenever they get sick. The genetic data will ultimately lead to patient empowerment and better provision of health care. Furthermore, the advancement in genetics may soon eliminate the need to perform organic transplant as new organs can be developed from the patients' tissues. The stem cells will be used in the generation of the replacement cartilage tissues that will help in the repair of the damaged joints (Huston, 2013).
Another way in which the nurses will use the new technology is by putting into use the more accurate and less invasive tools for diagnosis and treatment. These will most likely change the nursing profession in the future. For instance, tattoos will get utilized in the determination of the blood glucose especially without finger pricking. In the recent times, magnets have found profound usage in the treatment of depression. But in the future, the scanning technology is expected to progress to the extent that the hard and soft tissues of the body could be made so clear eliminating the invasive procedures and surgery. Also, tremendous progress will be made in the development of vaccines of certain types of cancer helping nurses in carrying out their duties (Huston, 2013).
The three-dimensional printing is a method that builds object layers by microscopic layers, bringing them together until a complete object is formed. The technology equally helps in the bio-printing for transplant. Robotics is an emerging field in the healthcare sector. It is expected to grow because there is a workforce shortage, need for better quality care and a growing elderly population. Lin (2017) argues that by the year 2025, the first nanobots would have been produced for use in the field of medicine. They will be able to end aging or reverse a person's current biological age. Another invention in the area of medicine is the bionic eye which will enhance vision in the patients (Lin, 2017).
Additionally, there is likely to be witnessed a continuous transformation of the health care environment with the need for confidential and secure data for the patients. The science of recognizing persons by the use of visible characteristics such as fingerprints, handprints, retina scans, palm vein and prints, facial structure, voice recognition and dynamic signatures often suggests a solution to information access (Huston, 2013). The use of the fingerprint biometrics is the most common as it is affordable, small and ease to us e. The other biometrics are slowly making inroads into the health care. The computerized physician and clinical decision support are a clinical software designed particularly for the providers to write the orders of the patients electronically instead of using paper. The software helps in reduction of the medical errors based on inaccurate transcription. It provides an important base for the provision of clinical decision support. The three ways through which nurses can improve the situation of the patients are; communication by the use of the emails, having a database of the patient's history and electronic order processing (Huston, 2013).
In conclusion, technology has and will substantially change the nursing profession. Electronic records are critical especially for the elderly patient as they account for more than one-third of the critical attention hospitalization cases, and spend quite a significant period in the hospital. The hospital electronic health record system will ultimately transform the nursing profession in the coming years. The genomics and genetics, more accurate diagnostic and treatment tools, the three-dimensional printing, robotics, biometrics and the computerized physician entry order and the clinical support decisions will revolutionize the profession further.
Huston, C. (2013). The impact of emerging technology on nursing care: Warp speed ahead. Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 18(2), 1-20.
Johnson, S. (2014, March 17). How has nursing changed and what does the future hold? The Guardian. Retrieved on June 5, 2017 from https://www.theguardian.com/healthcare-network/2015/mar/17/how-has-nursing-changed-and-what-does-the-future-hold
Lin, H. C. (2017). Nurses' satisfaction with using nursing information systems from technology acceptance model and information systems success model perspectives: a reductionist approach. CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing, 35(2), 91-99.
Wager, K. A., Lee, F. W., & Glaser, J. P. (2017). Health care information systems: a practical approach for health care management. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
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