Archive for the ‘Healthcare Informatics Education’ Category

Gaining confidence

June 12, 2013

Well I completed all of the reading and exercises for the first section of my Healthcare Informatics program and was ready to take the test. Now, having not taken a college exam for over 26 years I must say I was quite anxious about this. It was not like taking a CEU course and then taking the post test 3-4 times until you get the answers all correct. This was an actual college exam that was going to grade the knowledge you had gained over the last few weeks of reading.

I must say I was surprised once I accessed the exam to see how much I had retained from what I read. As an older learner I was prepared for some struggle. Did I use the book as I was permitted? Yes, but I found that I used it to confirm my answers not find them and that was a good feeling. I know that there will be struggles in this course and concepts that I will need to dissect and rebuild in my mind to be able to grasp them. However, I now know that I am able to grasp new ideas and content and use this knowledge, which will help me to apply it in the practical use of my job.

This was a day of firsts for me. It was the kick off of my first solo project as a “new” project coordinator and clinical informaticist. It was my first college exam on my quest to obtain my BSN and Healthcare Informatics Certificate. The first is often the hardest and sometimes the most rewarding and … it feels good.

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The Role of the Health Care Informatics Professional

May 1, 2013

The future of the health care informatics arena is unfolding every day with the implementation of electronic health record systems and other technologies designed to assist with the delivery of patient care. The need will be clearly identified for health care professionals and providers to obtain the knowledge to use information technology effectively. Health care informatics is a rapidly developing scientific field utilizing computer technology. Determining how health data is collected, stored, and communicated and how that data is processed to assist in clinical decisions and how automated technology can be used in process improvements, will be a major focus for health care informatists. Some health care organizations are slow to understand the benefits of creating health care informatics positions within their environments. However, I believe the health care organizations will continue to discover the value in creating such positions. As these organizations move towards electronic health records, the need for these skilled individuals will become evident. I see the role of the health care informatics professional bridging the gap between IT personnel, administrators, and communication to end-users, and somewhat taking on the role similar to that of a business analyst. They will become the knowledgeable individual to make sense of all the business requirements, stakeholder needs, end-user perspectives, and areas of improving efficiencies; then being able to deliver this message. They must work in partnership with all those who support the endeavors of creating a user friendly, financially efficient, clinical decision support, health care system, and assisting with resolving issues. The health care informatists must be proficient in information literature, with researching technology and methods to incorporate into the health care environment. Health care informatics applications can be used to improve the quality of patient care, to increase productivity, and to provide access to knowledge. In summary, my analogy is that health care is synonymous with people; thereby, continuing to identify the needs of the health care consumer and providing all measures of keeping them safe, informed, and educated must be an ongoing priority. I believe the future of the health care informatist is going to exponentially grow and develop into an exciting area for those who delve into the middle of the technology pool, to decipher the best means of providing health care information, quality patient care, improving best practices of care, and improving operational efficiencies. It is difficult to summarize such an exciting field of study; however, I especially appreciate the following quote and perhaps this sums it up very well: “If physiology literally means ‘the logic of life’, and pathology is ‘the logic of disease’, then health informatics is the logic of healthcare. It is the rational study of the way we think about patients, and the way that treatments are defined, selected, and evolved. It is the study of how clinical knowledge is created, shaped, shared, and applied. Ultimately, it is the study of how we organize ourselves to create and run healthcare organizations.” – Coiera E. Guide to Health Informatics. London:Hodder, 2003.

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Healthcare Information Systems and Project Management

April 29, 2013

Healthcare information systems refer to any technology that meets the needs of clinical management. These computer applications include databases, spreadsheets, statistical applications, decision support systems, and automated systems for research. These sites show the diversity of applications that are designed to support the delivery of care and are utilized in a variety of settings.

As the technology increases, the complexity of integrating these systems into a usable tool for the end user is extremely challenging. Successful implementation of the product is dependent on support from the application specialists and the implementation team and buy-in from the end users.

Project management is complex and critical in the implementation of an information system. Project management provides the guideline and communication for the project from the initial scope to the evaluation of the implementation and ongoing support. Listed below are some sites to support the project manager. We use Gantt charts to help document a project and its progress through the timeline.

http://www.evolt.org/article/A_Project_Management_Glossary/20/15355/

http://www.allpm.com/index.php

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newPPM_03.htm

http://www.planonthenet.com/screens.html

Healthcare informatics is a developing specialty. For nurses, certification provides validation of a nurse’s knowledge base in their field of specialty. Usually these certifications are identified as initials after the person’s name. These initials can be important in helping to define the abilities of that person. Certifications include:

1. Board Certification in Nursing Informatics by the American Nurses Credentialing Center http://www.nursecredentialing.org/Certification/NurseSpecialties/Informatics

2. HIMSS – Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems (CPHIMS) http://himss.org/ASP/certification_cphims.asp

3. Health IT certification – Certified Professional in Health Information Technology (CPHIT) http://www.healthitcertification.com/about.html

In addition to certifications, there are different educational tracks in Healthcare Informatics. Post-degree certificates, Masters, PhD, DNP, and DNSc degrees are available depending on the route that the Informatics professional chooses to take; research, practice leader, etc.

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Education for health care providers: developmental assessment

April 26, 2013

I used to work for Children’s Hospital in the IMU unit. Many times, we as nurses would encounter many genetic disorders that were foreign to us or we just did not know enough about the disorder to help educate their parents. Since I also took classes in genetics, I found myself digging further into a particular website OMIM. This website was extremely useful in providing information on genetic diseases and compiled all the information and studies on each genetic problem. This was useful because if children were not reaching their physical or emotional development, many times this was addressed within the study and what was “normal” for that disease process. Many families were at a loss and just did not understand the disease process. The Internet was extremely useful in educating parents and myself regarding the physical and emotional assessment of their child. Also we could print out valuable information and documentation to explain to parents with diagrams and help teach parents about the disorder and what they could expect in the future. I found the Internet to be extremely helpful in ways that books could not.

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Distributed Education: valuable in the healthcare environment

April 25, 2013

Distributed education and distance learning capabilities benefit the health care professional by providing anytime and anywhere high quality learning opportunities. This capability allows hospital personnel to more easily obtain credentials and keep up with continuing education requirements. Distance learning also promotes and facilitates communication among hospital personnel and hospital professionals. Many online resources promote collaboration across disciplines and institutions by facilitating the exchange of peer reviewed educational materials, knowledge, and solutions, which ultimately improve patient care. Additionally, implementation of an e-learning or learning management system enables healthcare organization to provide accessibility, reuse content, and interoperability of learning objects and tracking of learner progress. There is an increasing need for healthcare workers to transfer computer and information management skills to the workplace. The growing use of technologies through distributed education within healthcare professions is due to requirements of maintaining certifications, obtaining continuing education, and completing e-learning competencies. The advantage of distributed education and technology has created a multitude of opportunities for the ongoing development of the adult learner. Distributed education enables the healthcare professional to increase their skills in ongoing lifelong learning, which assists in providing improved patient care, resulting in better health outcomes.

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Walmart Holiday Specials Healthcare Informatics Textbooks

December 6, 2011

College Healthcare Informatics textbooks and more.

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Using nursing informatics to assist patients recovering from heart surgery

November 2, 2011

I am using “Health Assessment for Nursing Practice by Wilson. After reading chapter 18 of the textbook, Heart and Peripheral Vascular System, I was thinking about the many different ways in which nursing informatics could have a positive impact and possible help improve patient outcomes. I searched the internet and found an interesting article published by the Journal of Advanced Nursing titled “HeartCare: an Internet-based information and support system for patient home recovery after coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery.” Heart-Care is reportedly an Internet based program designed to assist and support patients who have undergone coronary artery bypass graft surgery in the recovery process at home. This type of program offers a good example of how nursing informatics may be used extensively in the future especially if programs like this one can provide positive patient outcomes.

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Technology Skills and Clinical Knowledge

September 23, 2011

Our nursing program is in the process of applying to become a degree-granting program. We are currently a diploma program. One of the needs we have identified is for courses (especially those that don’t require a clinical component) to be offered online. We are in the process of developing our curriculum and have identified at least five courses that we will start with as online courses. This presents the challenge of writing those courses so that they can be online. Not many of the current faculty has that skill. I have been taking courses online myself, but am not sure that I would be able or qualified to teach an online course. With the end of the nursing shortage nowhere in sight, the convenience of online courses will help. This presents another problem in that there is a shortage of nursing instructors and probably a shortage of instructors that are techno savvy. Schools need to make sure that their faculty has both the technological skills as well as the clinical knowledge.

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Advanced Physiological Nursing Course via Internet Learning, comment

January 24, 2011

I would have to totally agree with this comment. I am currently taking Advanced Physiological Nursing Course online. I also have tried to achieve my BSN degree while attending college on-campus but it is very hard once you are working full time as a nurse to have enough time and energy to make it to school. Most nurses have crazy, inconsistent work schedules which makes it even harder to have a set school schedule on top of work. The option to finish my BSN online has made it so much more convenient for me. I work 12 hr night shifts and a lot of times on my days off I am still awake during the night and sleep during the day. This has given me the flexibility to be able to study during the night and take exams during the night which are usually my prime hours. It has been very helpful and I plan to continue my Masters degree online as soon as I have completed my BSN.

Original Post
May 20, 2010
Title: Advanced Physiological Nursing Course via Internet Learning, comment
I have to agree with the two previous posts regarding this the ability to take this course on line, at my own pace, in my own home and around my schedule. I have put off going back for my BSN because I work full time and have a family that needs my attention. There is no way I could concentrate in the classroom if I was worried about my family at home. By taking this course on line, I am able to work the quizzes in at times that are convenient for both me and my family. I can go through the units at my own pace, spending additional time on the concepts that are more difficult or require extra attention. It has been a long time since I sat in a class room. This course is very impressive. I love the website and the interactive learning. It is also wonderful to get quizzes graded immediately with feedback regarding areas to concentrate on for incorrectly answered questions. There is no grading on a curve or extra credit assignments to pull your grade up. On line learning puts accountability on the student – you get out of it what you put into it.

Original Post
March 8, 2010
Title: Advanced Physiological Nursing Course Via Internet Learning
I couldn’t agree more with the writer of this discussion forum. I have learned much more from this course than if I was sitting in a traditional classroom. I am able to proceed at my own speed. I can concentrate more on the systems of the body where my knowledge is lacking and less on the systems I know better. It is less stressful also to be able to take quizzes and tests when I actually have time as opposed to on a schedule set by someone else. I can do my readings when I am at my best instead staying up half the night trying to complete them in time for the next class. It has forced me to really utilize my time management skills.

Original Post
March 4, 2010
Title: Advanced Physiological Nursing Course Via Internet Learning
This was a great course, I feel as though I learned more than I would have sitting in a classroom because I not only had to do the reading but also had to research the Internet to find answers and explanations to questions I didn’t know, was unsure about, or didn’t understand. In many ways this course was harder than the past physiology course I took sitting in a classroom. I think in the classroom it is all too easy for instructors to teach to their test (either subtly or overtly) because their success is on the line. With an Internet course the ability to pass the class and do well rests with me. My goal was to come into this class and learn as much as I can, give more than 100% and achieve the highest possible grade I can earn. I feel as though I have accomplished the first goals and will await taking the final to see if I have achieved my last goal of an A in this course.

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Internet Education and a changing belief among traditional nurse educators, comment

November 29, 2010

I also have mixed feelings about online education. I feel it is beneficial for experienced nurses who are going back to college but not for nurses who are fairly new. Deciding experience and new is the difficult part. I know some experienced nurses who definitely need to sit in a class room and newer nurses who can grasp ideas without any problem. I think any nurse doing a online program should be actively working and should only be able to do an online program with the recommendation from there immediate supervisor.

Original Post
July 29, 2010
Title: Internet Education and a changing belief among traditional nurse educators, comment
I personally have mixed feelings about online education. I feel there are a variety of pros and cons dealing with this issue. The pros are that the student has high flexibility are far as the time constraints go and the student has the ability to take test and complete work according to their work schedule. The main negative is that the student has very limited amount of instructor interaction. Therefore if the student is having issues or a problem they can’t figure out they may become more anxious about completing assignments.


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