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2024 is the 30th Anniversary of National Nurses Week!

Today is May 6th and it marks the start of another year of National Nurses Week in the United States!

As I thought about Nurses Week, I wondered, what is the history of this week for our profession? 

As a nurse of now 24 years, I have always had National Nurses Week. However, it was not long before that where there was not such a celebratory week recognizing the efforts and talents of the nurses across the country. 

According to the American Nurses Association's history of Nurses Week, it was in 1993 when the ANA Board of Directors designated May 6th - May 12th as National Nurses Week for 1994 and beyond! 

Thus, 2024 would mark 30 years of continued celebrations. 

As nurses who have an interest, curiosity, or are currently working in health information technology and/or informatics, you may also be interested to know that the first board certification exam for informatics nursing was offered right around that time in 1995 (and recognized as a specialty practice...

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"I went into nursing to care for patients, not computers."

Nursing is the science of caring. When I first had the interest to be a nurse, my interest was in helping other people. The use of technological solutions was not a core focus for me to pursue my nursing education and preparation. 

When electronic health records (EHRs) began to enter into the nursing care practice, we as nurses started to see a shift in how visible technology was in care delivery. Charting went from paper based records to electronic based records. 

However, technology has always been a part of care delivery. 

Consider the stethoscope. Is that a technology? 

What about the blood pressure cuff or the oxygen saturation monitor? 

Technology has always been a part of nursing care delivery. However, how we use technology and to what extent has increased tremendously over the last two decades. 

To help support the integration of technology into nursing care, we have nurses who specialize in the use of technology. The nursing...

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Compassionate Technology

Happy Spring Ahead Sunday!

This morning I woke up to the sun out and that was refreshing! The last several weeks have been so cold and dreary that the brightness shining through the window made for an already pleasant start to the day. After a brief walk this morning I was not ready to jump into anything yet. I decided to watch a video seminar that had been recommended to me on the topic of Compassionate Technology. 

I was intrigued by the combination of the term compassionate within technology. Compassionate Care is a common term in nursing and healthcare. Anyone involved in the human aspect of healthcare has to have a compassionate side to his/her/their self. However this was a first for me to see the word compassionate paired within technology. Technology tends to have a rigid, forceful, direct, and binary connotation when first introduced. 

Putting those two terms together caught my attention in the context of nursing and healthcare delivery. As nurses and healthcare...

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Let the Purpose Influence and Move You through the Day to Day

I was on a phone call last week discussing nursing, nursing informatics, and healthcare overall. During the conversation, I started to chuckle a bit and say that I do not get overly excited about spending hours each day sending and responding to emails. (I imagine that many of you can relate to this as well). However, I rarely look at emails as the goal. 

Instead, my mind is focused on the purpose of the email(s) and who I am connecting with or being connected to in an effort to help advance the work toward that collective goal. If email, phone calls, video calls, or other mechanisms help to reach that, then so be it. 

When projects get busy and time gets tight with timelines and milestones, our ability to think beyond the current moment gets a bit more challenging in the day to day. Yet, consider all of the people who you are helping through your diligent efforts and dedication to the details that working in nursing, health IT and informatics requires of...

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Certified Nurses day is Coming Soon - March 19th!

Certified Nurses Day is coming soon on March 19th, less than 1 month away!

Perhaps you are board certified in nursing informatics or another certification in nursing. There are 12 specialty certifications in nursing with informatics nursing being one of those 12 available through the American Nurses Credentialing Center  (ANCC). 

Informatics nursing has been a specialty certification since 1995, nearly 30 years now. Nursing informatics was initially recognized as a specialty nursing practice in 1992 after decades of pioneering by nurses. 

In the 1990's the use of digital health tools were quite limited in nursing care delivery. Yet, there was a strong vision for the future for what was to come. 

Today, we are living in the digital age with continual need for improvements and refinement to address the data, information, knowledge, and wisdom needs of nurses, doctors, patients, families and the entire health care team. 

As we look toward the future the...

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When I first shifted to health IT...

Happy Sunday!

Perhaps it is the optimist in me but when we reach February, I know Spring is coming soon. (Now keep in mind that I live in the Northeast where it gets quite cold). However, I am looking ahead into the future while living in the present. 

I see this optimistic and future oriented perspective present in how I've approached professional endeavors in the past as well. Nearly 20 years ago now, I opted for a clinical analyst role in an Information Technology (IT) department to work on an Electronic Health Record (EHR) project. 

I wanted to take on a new role in nursing that would allow me to help other nurses who are caring for patients. While I had limited IT knowledge, I had strong clinical nursing knowledge and experience to support the design of the EHR. 

However, in making that shift away from the bedside, I ran into some resistance from others. I would hear directly and indirectly that I had "gone to the dark side". I also would on occasion hear...

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New Informatics Nurse Board Certification Exam from ANCC

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...

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Happy Holidays & Year End Review

Wishing each of you a happy holiday season! 

As 2022 nearly comes to an end, it is natural to think about the future while also reflecting on the accomplishments of the past year. 

At iCare, we saw so many of you reach your goals and share your successes with us! Those are exciting moments for us and we appreciate you sharing your accomplishments with us!

We also heard from you of areas where you'd like to see more from us in the year to come and beyond. (More to come in 2023...)

We upgraded our website and moved to a new platform for more ease of use and the opportunity to expand our offerings in a more seamless way. 

We also added on some new programs with one more coming *hopefully* before the end of 2022!

Revamp your Resume was added to support your professional  resume development. We often hear from nurses who are not in formal informatics roles but wish to do so, how they can showcase their informatics and health IT expertise. While this program was...

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Advancing your Informatics Career...

During the summer of 2014, I finally committed to taking the informatics nurse board certification exam. 

I did not know how to approach studying for it nor how it would go but I was tired of putting it off and knew if I did not do it soon, it would continue to get put off. 

While I had my PhD in nursing informatics from Duke, I knew that I was still missing that third party validation of my knowledge that could be assessed by clients, customers, and colleagues. I did not want there to be any question that my knowledge, experience, expertise, and approaches to health IT projects and practice  was comprehensive, thorough, and valuable to others. 

Unfortunately, there have been many times where I have been asked, "what is informatics?" and "what do informatics nurses do?". Those are times when I reflect on their questions and recognize that more clarity is needed to our roles and capabilities. 

One way to demonstrate your capabilities, expertise, and...

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