The healthcare setting continues to adopt informatics to advance nursing competencies and the quality of patient care. Nagle, Sermeus & Junger (2017) note that nursing informatics roles are “focused on supporting acquisition, implementation, and evaluation of clinical information systems in health care organization” (p. 213). The core competencies of such professionals are based more on the use of data and information than technology. Skills required include innovation and knowledge generation, implementation of new technologies, quality assessment, change management, documentation, communication, and data analytics. Moreover, virtual medical care in the form of remote consultations and monitoring is now increasingly developing, which is also part of the field of informatics. Thus, nursing informatics’s critical roles include collecting and analyzing data from a variety of sources, generating and communicating knowledge, and participating in the provision and development of virtual care technologies.
Specific Setting for the Use of Nursing Informatics within the Community
Within my community, nursing informatics can be applied to fundamental healthcare setting operations. First of all, the nursing practice involves working with an electronic recording system, which requires data analysis skills and working with a variety of sources of information. Moreover, informatics serves to generate and manage “knowledge and wisdom in nursing practice” (Wang et al., 2019, p. 419). Thus, the required competencies can be used in the development of both individual and team professional skills. Finally, nursing informatics can be applied to conduct research and introduce innovation to improve the quality of care. Continuous research on clinical data is the foundation of “progress in the science of medicine and the processes of health care” (Séroussi, Soualmia & Holmes, 2017, p. 4). Thus, nursing informatics is of key importance in modern clinical practice and in the provision of high-quality patient care.
Organizations and Journals Providing More Information on Nursing Informatics
American Nursing Informatics Association (ANIA) is the most authoritative organization in the field of nursing informatics. The mission of the association is to advance information technology and data analysis in nursing through research and practice (“About us” n. d.). Members of the organization strive to use informatics to improve health care. The association also publishes a journal providing up-to-date and credible information on nursing informatics. Journal of Informatics Nursing (JIN) is a digital publication released every quarter and available to ANIA members. Each issue contains “a continuing nursing education (CNE) activity, regular columns, and a variety of feature articles on various topics impacting nurse informaticists” (“Journal of Informatics Nursing,” n. d.). There is also an Online Journal of Nursing Informatics supported by the HIMSS Nursing Informatics Community (“Online Journal of Nursing Informatics,” n. d.). The journal is less reputable but offers information not only to ANIA members. Thus, there are several organizations which publish credible research information on the topic.
How Informatics Prepare Nurses for Practice
The building blocks of nursing informatics are nursing science, information science, and computer science. The main part involves directly applying the knowledge gained through education and research to provide patient care (Manhart Barrett, 2017). Nursing science is the foundation for using the information to solve problems and make decisions. Information science helps nurses use and analyze data effectively within an organization. This block prepares a nurse for communication and knowledge generation, as well as clinical research. Computer science has the least impact as it involves interacting with technology and computing. However, it prepares nurses to work with data recording systems and documentation, which are necessary to ensure their practice.
From a nursing informatics perspective, the defining characteristics are critical thinking, the ability to analyze data, the application of information for research, and the development of innovation. The core competencies of the nurse focusing on informatics are knowledge generation, communication, and change management. Thus, these professionals need to consistently use both organizational records and research information in order to ensure the most effective use of technology in patient care. The priority areas of the nurse, in this case, are a data analytics and virtual approaches to medical care. Nursing informatics is the most progressive and relevant area of activity, which is gradually becoming more common in all areas of nursing practice.
In addition to an active registered nurse (RN) license, a nursing informatician must have at least a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). However, for further development or fulfillment of leadership roles, it is necessary to obtain a certificate or graduate degree. Nurses can acquire bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degrees, particularly in the fields of healthcare informatics and information technology. Certificates are increasingly important for the development of professional skills in nursing informatics. The HIMSS and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) offer various programs for higher competencies in computer science and information management. Thus, nurses aspiring to work in the information field should have sufficiently extensive knowledge and formal education.
The Past, Current, and Future Impacts of Nursing Informatics
In the past, the health care system required documentation and record-keeping, which gave nurses access to computers and patient’s personal terminals. Gradually, medical personnel became involved in data analytics and computing when interacting with new technologies. Nursing informatics is now also used to record data from hospitals and clinical research. Its impact on staff performance is enormous, as data is used not only to support the healthcare system but also to accumulate and develop knowledge. In the future, informatics can be used to introduce innovative diagnostic and treatment technologies, as well as virtual approaches to care. Thus, the development of this area is key for the subsequent construction of a highly effective modern nursing practice.
About us. (n. d.). American Nursing Informatics Association. Web.
Manhart Barrett, E. A. (2017). Again, what is nursing science? Nursing Science Quarterly, 30(2), 129-133. Web.
Journal of Informatics Nursing. (n. d.). American Nursing Informatics Association. Web.
Nagle, L.M., Sermeus, W., & Junger, A. (2017). Evolving role of the nursing informatics specialist. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 232, 212-221. Web.
Online Journal of Nursing Informatics. (n. d.). HIMSS. 2021, Web.
Séroussi, B., Soualmia, L. F., & Holmes, J. H. (2017). Transforming data into knowledge: How to improve the efficiency of clinical care? Yearbook of Medical Informatics, 26(1), 4-6. Web.
Wang, J., Gephart, S. M., Mallow, J., & Bakken, S. (2019). Models of collaboration and dissemination for nursing informatics innovations in the 21st century. Nursing Outlook, 67(4), 419-432. Web.