Functional role of nurses in Nursing Informatics
There can be different types of nurses in nursing informatics field. The American Nurse Association define Informatics nurse specialist (INS) as the nurses who have been prepared at the graduate level with the informatics or related subjects. And INS differ from the Informatics nurse (IN) as they are having appropriate graduate level qualification while IN does not have a graduate level qualification they only have experience. Information nurses work at the intersection of the clinical practice and technology. Nursing information has become so wide and enriched with the combination of nursing and informatics that initially it was related to the design of electronic medical records and equipments while at present role of nurses in present age has become to integrate the health delivery with a factor of differentiation for implementation, selection and evaluation of health IT leading to high quality patient care (Dix et al, 2011).
One of the roles for information nurses at healthcare can be to make decisions regarding system requirements for patients and users. For example, informatics nurses would be involved in order to evaluate and select appropriate technology required, understanding user requirement for technology and providing training to the end users for smooth operations. Hence, role of nurses in this domain would be more of an information technology practioners, but because of the importance of informatics nurse specialist this role is being handled by nurses instead of information technology staff.
Another functional role in nursing informatics for nurses can be for development of program and policies in the health and human service department. For example, Health and human service department in Washington DC employs informatics nurses for the deputy national coordinator for health IT. Some of the major functional roles for information nurses can be given as under:
- Administration, leadership and management: Informatics nurses are working in the role of administration, leadership and management either in the direct role or through a combination of other functional areas. For example, informatics nurses are working as project manager in nursing informatics.
- Analysis: Informatics nurses are working in order to make analysis through synthesizing knowledge, informed decision support and managing outcomes along with taxonomies. For example Informatics nurses are acting as information analyst and helping in the decision making process.
- Integrity management and compliance: Informatics nurses are involved in the process of compliance management in the organization. For example informatics nurses have a key role in order to ensure requirement for meeting national standards and laws such as FDA, Joint commission and HIPAA etc. (Englebardt & Nelson, 2012).
- Consultation: Informatics nurses are working as internal as well as external resources for providing consultation on matters of health informatics. Consultation is being provided mainly to consumers regarding nursing practices, information systems and the impact of both on consumer lives so that consumers are having proper knowledge pertaining to the medical field. This knowledge gained by consumers would help them in order to make informed decisions (Feather & Sturges, 2012).
- Facilitation, coordination and integration: Facilitation, coordination and integration work are done by informatics nurses to become as the translator for end users and experts from IT department. Nurses would be working in close coordination with end users as well as IT department so that consumers’ needs, can be communicated to the IT department so that information system can be designed in accordance with the end users (Benner, 2012). Further this would also help the IT department to design in close conformity with users.
- Development: Informatics nurses are having key role in order to translate user requirement for the product solution in order to facilitate user requirements in the offered product or service for the end users of the technology.
- Professional development and education: Informatics nurses are having key role in order to provide training and development support for the end users and next generation nurses. For example informatics nurses are acting as the trainers for general public and next generation nurses.
- Advocacy and policy development: Informatics nurses are acting as the advocate for hospital units and consumers in order to develop the standard rules and policies at various levels such as organization, state and national level. Hence informatics nurses are having their intervention for the policy development and advocacy as they are having knowledge pertaining to both i.e. nursing as well as technology domain.
- Evaluation and research: Nurses are involved in research and development work wherein they are conducting research on a variety of informatics topics. These researchers would be acting as the key guiding source for the consumers as well as nursing practioners or care givers.
American Nurses Association. (2008). Nursing Informatics: Scope & Standards of Practice. Silver Spring, MD: Nursesbooks.org. HIMSS. Position Statement on Transforming Nursing Practice through Technology & Informatics. Chicago, IL. Retrieved fromhttp://www.himss.org/ASP/ContentRedirector.asp?ContentID=78995
Benner P. (2012). From novice to expert: Excellence and power in clinical nursing practice. Menlo Park, CA: Addison-Wesley
Dix, A., Finlay, J., Abowd, G., & Beale, R. (2011). Human-computer interaction. 2709 Harlow, England: Pearson, Prentice Hall.
Englebardt, S. & Nelson, R. (2012) Health care informatics: An interdisciplinary 2712 approach. St. Louis: Mosby-Year Book, Inc.
Feather, J., & Sturges, P. (2012). ‘Information management’ in the 2719 International Encyclopedia of Information and Library Science, 2nd ed. London: 2720 Routledge. Accessed at 2721 http://informationr.net/tdw/publ/papers/encyclopedia_entry.html.