Today, you were on the floor, clinic or in a virtual care environment. The patient in front of you presented with an acute illness, one you may have seen before, or one that is different and perplexing. Instinctively, you used the nursing process, and your organized and critical thinking skills to put the clinical pieces together and devised a plan of care that gave the patient the best outcome at the end of their visit.
In that time, you may have been tired, hungry, distracted and just plain overwhelmed with your workload in the clinical space. You gave the patient all the time you could, maybe just a few minutes, at most. Human communication, in the short interaction, was limited. The last thing you may have been thinking about was how you were using healthcare technology, the derived data, and your non-traditional thinking to make the right care decisions.
But think about it, as the patient’s nurse, here’s what you did:
You used mobile devices to take vital signs and collect specimens for the lab
You assessed the patient’s condition and charted it in the electronic health record
You collected and analyzed the data and captured an accurate account of the patient’s condition
You communicated to other members of the care team likely by an electronic tool or device
You were inventive in the care process if tools or resources weren’t available, or clinical systems were not working properly
In the end, you created a new way of caring that was unique to that patient. In this little window, you and how you practiced evolved.
It may not seem like it, but you do use technology, data, and creativity (TDC) in practice every day. Using it to your advantage is key. The innovations utilized, the resulting information and your inventiveness make the nursing process more precise, easier and faster. Together, TDC ultimately lets you spend valuable time with patients and families, and engage them more deeply in their care. The evolution of nursing care starts with you.
Having advanced knowledge of the ways you use technology and data shifts care delivery and allow you to begin to invent better ways of doing so. It helps you paint a clear picture of your patients, promote patient-centeredness and create new ways to move them to the next phase of care.
The evolution of nursing care starts with you.
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