Every time I start to try to explain informatics to someone, especially someone in nursing and healthcare, I use the two terms of heart rate and pulse as an initial example.
At the surface, a nurse or healthcare professional might consider these to be the same thing, just different expressions for what the beats per minute are for one's heart.
Yet, to someone who is not a nurse or healthcare professional, these are two different words so why would they necessarily mean the same thing?
This is especially true of those who work on developing health IT systems. Heart rate and pulse are two discrete terms.
So what is the implication of having two different terms that could mean the same thing?
The impact of having two different terms that may mean the same thing is that someone, likely someone within a nursing and clinical informatics role, needs to decipher the semantical difference (if any) between these two terms.
This is a simple example but is...
Artificial Intelligence, commonly referred to as AI is a term that has taken on new levels of buzz in the mainstream across industries. ChatGPT from OpenAI seems to have accelerated our discussion of advanced artificial intelligence digital technologies in healthcare.
However, we must remember the same principles we use to assess, design, develop, test, implement, adopt, optimize and maintain new healthcare technologies when considering AI tools.
Technologies in healthcare must be are available to support rather than lead us in how we deliver care. To do so requires that we, nurses, doctors and all members of the healthcare team (e.g, including patients) are knowledgeable about artificial intelligence to be able to envision how it can support areas of our information needs that we cannot accomplish on our own.
I was recently interviewed on AI for Nurse Journal in a piece entitled, "How AI can transform nursing practice". You can read that piece here. Of the...
ANCC released its updated test content outline for the Informatics Nurse board exam on May 3rd 2023. Many have been awaiting this new information (originally expected in December 22 and then June 23) to know what new content and/or changes may occur.
I was surprised to see it come a month earlier than expected but we got to work and began reviewing the differences in the previous exam content and framework with that of the new exam.
Some good news to consider for those that have been actively preparing - everything you've been preparing for still applies. There may just be some additions you need to include in your study plan.
Some differences include:
1. The exam is now 150 questions (instead of 175 questions). We anticipate this means that your time available during the test is also cut a bit short (likely 3 hours from 3.5 hours). There are 25 practice questions that are not counted toward your score in this 150 questions. However, you will not be able to...
Every two years, HIMSS releases a new report on the results of their Nursing Informatics Workforce Survey. The last report was for 2020 and I was excited to see that the 2022 report is now out!
At the start of the HIMSS report, acknowledgement is made that "nurse informaticists are a critical human component to broadly enhancing healthcare. They are the driving force behind health innovation and technology to realize the full health potential of every human everywhere." As the healthcare industry continues to become more technologically dependent, such roles continue to be critical.
A total of 1,118 informatics nurses responded to the survey (with 5% of respondents from outside of the U.S.) and contributed their thoughts on questions relating to nursing informatics in general, workplace locations, compensation, education and experience, job details, organizational structure, and more.
Over 35% of informatics nurses reported that the number of informatics nurse...
A few weeks ago, I was speaking to someone about health IT and nursing informatics as a career pathway following direct nursing care.
The transition from direct nursing care to an IT role in healthcare informatics can be significant. The obvious change is stepping away from providing patient care in the sense that we tend to think of it.
Instead of being assigned the care of one to many patients (the number varying depending on your clinical area), nurses transitioning into a health IT role will be working as part of a team on digital health projects and IT optimization.
Such efforts require significant collaborative time working with clinical users, leaders, and translating decisions made during such design meetings into health IT build changes for future implementation. When not in meetings, your activities will require independent work on your laptop to configure and document the design decisions and manage communications.
The person I was speaking to was...
I went on a trip recently and the day before I left I had a thought, "what if my luggage does not make it to the destination?" I have that thought every trip but this time I started to think about how to be prepared for such an event.
I thought of the Apple AirTags that I had seen in videos on the internet. I am an Apple user and appreciate the integration of the devices. With the 'Find My....' app, you can identify where all of your devices are (as long as they are synced with the app).
So, while I did not purchase the AirTag in time for the trip, (thankfully my bag made it with me :) ), I did purchase one as soon as I returned home.
I linked it up to the Find My... app and it is now part of the suite of products I have organized.
So, how does this relate to healthcare and informatics?
Well, in this instance I had the problem I was looking to solve where I could have more data and information about where my luggage...
Good afternoon all!
Today is March 19th and it is Certified Nurses Day!
Certified Nurses Day is a celebratory day for all of the nurses who are seeking to advance in the profession and contribute as a specialized leader in nursing. Certified Nurses Day occurs on the 19th of March in celebration of Dr. Margretta "Gretta" Madden Styles EdD, RN, FAAN. Dr. Styles was a pioneer in advancing nursing through standards, credentials and governing bodies to support advancement through certification in nursing.
There are 18 nursing certifications currently available on the ANCC website. Informatics Nursing is one of those certifications. The first certification exam for Informatics Nursing was offered in 1995, nearly 30 years ago!
The most recent data shows that there are 3132 board certified informatics nurses as of 2021. Perhaps you are one of those, perhaps you are on your way to become the next board certified nurse, or perhaps it is a goal of yours in the short or long...
Good evening all,
I was walking down the street this evening with my AirPods in my ear, and music playing from my phone's Music app that is connected via Bluetooth. All of these technologies supported my preference to listen to a few songs while I ran some errands. When I returned home, I took the AirPods out of my ears, put them in the case, turned the Music app off and put the phone on the counter. The technology is there to use but I opted not to do so for what I wanted to do next (get dinner ready, write this blog post, and more).
I share this as a simple every day example of how technology is there to support our needs and preferences. Those needs and preferences come from people first in the context of workflows or processes.
If I did not want or like to listen to music while out, the AirPods and Music app would have limited relevance for me in how I use them.
In relation to nursing and healthcare, the same concept applies to the technologies that...
Before writing these posts, I reflect on areas were I've had interactions related to informatics in my day to day life that catch my attention.
You may have noticed that I titled this reflection Genetics & Informatics. This is an areas we discuss during the Nursing Informatics Certification Exam Review (NICER) Program and it typically comes with some questions. How is genetics related to informatics?
Well, I have experienced this myself through professional informatics consulting with a large genetics company, and also personally, with my own health visits.
The professional informatics consulting involved working with a clinical information system to support the design and testing of their product before deployed to clients. The product provided cancer screening tools for genetic counselors to use when working with referred patients to determine their cancer risk. I worked to test the software in the same way that I would for any other clinical...
Just a few weeks ago, I remember hearing of ChatGPT across several industries and thought leaders. Similar to other anticipated tech trends, ChatGPT began to bring discussions of promise and risk. As with any new technology, there will be benefits and disadvantages (e.g., often referred to as unintended consequences).
As I heard this term used over and over again, I wanted to find out what it was and why it was gaining so much attention almost immediately after being introduced.
Yet, how exactly does it work? Well, the best way to explore this new technology is to test it out for yourself. You can sign up for an account here for free and try for yourself: https://chat.openai.com/.
I signed up for an account and am also attending a workshop in a few weeks to better...