The role of informatics in promoting patient-centered care
Patient-centered care is a key component of quality care and higher patient outcomes. And indeed, high-quality care cannot exist without patient-centered care. Health informatics plays a primary role in promoting patient-centered care and improving health care outcomes. Informatics combines clinical expertise and technological advancements in care delivery, allowing nurses to better perform their jobs in different ways and deliver patient-centered care.
For instance, health informatics has played an important role in reducing medical errors and associated care costs. Patient safety can only exist where good communication between patients, nurses, and physicians exists. The traditional paper documentation system required nurses to transcribe orders from the providers by hand. Problems such as poor handwriting, mistakes, and human errors often resulted in medical errors and omissions, promoting lower patient outcomes.
Today, health informatics, particularly the electric health record system, allows nurses to receive information in digital form and get the accurate prescription in real-time. Some technologies analyze the prescription in relation to the condition, existing allergies, and current medication of the patient, and an alert given in case of a concern.
The treatment process integrates different healthcare departments, processes, and teams. Health informatics allows nurses informaticists to create and amend protocols and procedures that are unique and standard to each department. The goal is to ensure proper communication between these departments and health care providers at each stage of the treatment process.
Furthermore, health informatics has improved the aspect of patient privacy. Unlike the traditional paper system that was vulnerable to third-party interference, nurses use different programs and software that are not easy to access without authorization. Informatics will collect, analyze and store patient clinical information safely, promoting patient’s integrity. This enhances patient satisfaction and outcome in the long run.
Moreover, informatics influences patient-centered care through participatory care records. The use of an electronic health record system does not only help to record relevant clinical data but also integrates a dynamic display system that ensures even the most salient aspects of the patient health history and other related aspects like beliefs and preferences are accessible at any point of care. Unlike traditional record systems that buried such information in thousands of pages, a participatory care record ensures that all information is well preserved and visible when needed.
Informatics is the newest trend in health care. The increasing growing population and increased complexity of illnesses call for the integration of informatics into health care. Today, nurses encounter vast amounts of data on a daily basis that needs to be recorded and analyzed effectively. Nurses who are skilled and knowledgeable in informatics have been seen to be more productive during practice now more than ever.
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