The Impact of Technology on Nursing

Technology has transformed many aspects of human life, including health care and nursing. Nursing is a profession that requires both clinical skills and compassion, and technology can enhance both of these aspects. Technology can also improve the quality, safety, efficiency, and accessibility of health care services. In this blog post, we will explore some of the ways that technology benefits the nursing field and the challenges that it poses.

Technology Benefits for Nursing

One of the main benefits of technology for nursing is that it can facilitate communication and collaboration among health care professionals, patients, and families. For example, electronic health records (EHRs) can store and share patient information across different settings and providers, reducing errors, duplication, and delays. EHRs can also support clinical decision making by providing access to evidence-based guidelines, alerts, and reminders. Moreover, EHRs can enable patient engagement and empowerment by allowing them to access their own health information, communicate with their providers, and participate in their care plans (Huston, 2016).

Another benefit of technology for nursing is that it can improve patient outcomes and satisfaction. For instance, telehealth can provide remote monitoring, diagnosis, treatment, and education for patients who live in rural areas or have limited mobility. Telehealth can also reduce costs, travel time, and hospital admissions for patients with chronic conditions. Furthermore, telehealth can enhance patient satisfaction by offering convenience, comfort, and continuity of care. According to a systematic review by Kruse et al. (2017), telehealth interventions have positive effects on patient outcomes such as blood pressure, blood glucose, weight, pain, depression, and quality of life.

A third benefit of technology for nursing is that it can enhance nursing education and practice. For example, simulation can provide realistic and interactive learning experiences for nursing students and professionals. Simulation can help develop clinical skills, critical thinking, teamwork, and confidence in a safe and controlled environment. Simulation can also expose learners to diverse and complex scenarios that they may encounter in real life. Additionally, simulation can provide feedback and evaluation for learners to improve their performance (Cant & Cooper, 2017).

Technology Challenges for Nursing

Despite the benefits of technology for nursing, there are also some challenges that need to be addressed. One of the main challenges is the ethical and legal implications of technology use. For example, technology can pose risks to patient privacy and confidentiality if the data is not stored or transmitted securely. Technology can also raise ethical dilemmas such as informed consent, autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, and justice in relation to telehealth or artificial intelligence. Moreover, technology can create legal issues such as liability, malpractice, licensure, and regulation in different jurisdictions (Huston, 2016).

Another challenge of technology for nursing is the digital divide and health disparities. The digital divide refers to the gap between those who have access to technology and those who do not. The digital divide can affect both patients and providers who may lack the resources, skills, or literacy to use technology effectively. The digital divide can also contribute to health disparities among different populations based on factors such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, income, education, geography, and disability. Therefore, it is important to ensure that technology is accessible, affordable, user-friendly,
and culturally appropriate for all stakeholders (Kruse et al., 2017).

A third challenge of technology for nursing is the need for ongoing education and training. Technology is constantly evolving and changing, requiring nurses to update their knowledge and skills accordingly. Technology can also create new roles and responsibilities for nurses that may require additional competencies or credentials. Furthermore,
technology can affect the work environment and culture of nursing by changing the workflow,
relationships,
and expectations among colleagues,
patients,
and families.
Therefore,
it is essential to provide adequate education
and training for nurses to use technology safely
and effectively
(Huston,
2016).

Conclusion

Technology has a significant impact on nursing
and health care
in general.
Technology can offer many benefits
such as improved communication,
collaboration,
patient outcomes,
satisfaction,
education,
and practice.
However,
technology also poses some challenges
such as ethical
and legal implications,
digital divide
and health disparities,
and need for ongoing education
and training.
Therefore,
nurses need to be aware
of the opportunities
and challenges
of technology use
and adopt a critical
and reflective approach
to integrate technology into their professional practice.

Works Cited

Cant,
R.P.,
& Cooper,
S.J.
(2017).
The value of simulation-based learning in pre-licensure nurse education: A state-of-the-art review
and meta-analysis.
Nurse Education in Practice,
27,
45-62.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nepr.2017.08.012

Huston,
C.L.
(2016).
Professional issues in nursing: Challenges
and opportunities
(4th ed.).
Wolters Kluwer.

Kruse,
C.S.,
Krowski,
N.,
Rodriguez,
B.,
Tran,
L.,
Vela,
J.,
& Brooks,
M.
(2017).
Telehealth
and patient satisfaction: A systematic review
and narrative analysis.
BMJ Open,
7(8),
e016242.
https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-016242

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