NURS 4040 Managing Information and Technology Assessment 1: Nursing Informatics in Healthcare

Nursing Informatics and the Nurse Informaticist

Healthcare organizations rely massively upon information and data to provide quality care to the proximal patient populations. For instance, data from patient records, outputs from electrocardiograms, radiographs, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and computed tomography (CT) scans provide justifications for care delivery.

NURS 4040 Managing Information and Technology Assessment 1: Nursing Informatics in Healthcare

According to McGonigle & Mastrian (2018), valuable information in healthcare should exhibit various characteristics, including accessibility, security, timeliness, accuracy, utility, verifiability, and relevancy. It is essential to note that an absence of valuable information and data compromises healthcare professionals’ ability to provide timely, convenient, patient-centered, evidence-based, and effective care. As a result, healthcare institutions perceive the need to enhance the role of nursing informaticists to leverage nursing informatics effectively.

What is nursing informatics?

Nursing informatics integrates data, information, knowledge, and wisdom into nursing to improve practices and enhance decisions. Although the definition of nursing informatics (NI) has undergone revisions due to the consistent advancement in information management approaches, the American Nurses Association (ANA) defines NI as “the specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage, and communicate data, information, knowledge, and wisdom in nursing practice” (Kassam, Nangle & Strudwick, 2017, p. 1).

Based on this definition, it is valid to argue that nursing informatics supports interprofessional healthcare teams in their decisions, roles, and settings to realize strategic goals and desired outcomes.

What is the role of the nurse informaticist?

The American Nurses Association (ANA) presents nursing informatics as a specialty that integrates data, information, knowledge, and wisdom into nursing practice. As a result, nurse informaticists are specialists tasked with overseeing the effective integration of these components into healthcare practices and processes.

According to Hebda et al. (2019), informatics specialists have advanced skills specific to health-information management and computer technology. They assist organizations in implementing new information technologies, assessing data quality, and using information systems. Also, nurse informaticists educate other employees on new systems, technologies, and workflows.

Finally, they play a significant role in enhancing data security, privacy, and confidentiality by guiding healthcare organizations and professionals to implement various data safeguards, including physical, technical, and administrative data protection mechanisms.

Nurse Informaticists and Other Healthcare Organizations

Healthcare organizations benefit from the integration of nursing informatics into clinical practices and processes. Hebda et al. (2019) contend that nurse informaticists have advanced health information and computer skills that enable healthcare organizations to manage information and integrate data, knowledge, and wisdom into nursing practices. The benefits of enhancing the role of nurse informaticists include improved patient care, ensuring data privacy, security, and confidentiality, efficient workflows, and increased return on investment.

How nurse informaticists interact with the rest of the nursing staff and interdisciplinary team

Nurse informaticists participate effectively in interdisciplinary approaches for improving the integration of information, data, knowledge, and wisdom into nursing practice. Therefore, they collaborate and interact with the rest of the nursing staff members, including nurses, physicians, organizational leaders, and IT experts, in various activities, including triaging, implementing new technologies, and improving systems.

According to Kassam, Nangle & Strudwick (2017), nurse informaticists provide guidance and support to others in applying advanced knowledge and technologies like clinical decision support systems and genomics. Their interactions with other team members facilitate the integration of knowledge, data, information, and wisdom into nursing practice.

Impact of Full Nurse Engagement in Healthcare Technology

Improved Patient Care

Nurses play a forefront role in providing quality care. However, technology developers often exclude them when implementing health technologies. According to Dykes & Chu (2020), nurses understand care demands, intricacies of patient populations, organizational structures, and infection control practices.

Therefore, their full involvement in healthcare technology should inform the innovation process from idea generation to diffusion. It is essential to note that involving nurses in healthcare technology can improve patient care by eliminating medication errors, improving care processes, and promoting timely and convenient care delivery.

Protected Health Information

Equally, involving nurses in healthcare technology can improve interventions for protecting health information and ensuring data security, privacy, and confidentiality. Dykes & Chu (2020) contend that nurses understand organizational systems, including system functionality and information interoperability dimensions. As a result, involving them in healthcare technology can bolster interdisciplinary interventions for ensuring data security, privacy, and confidentiality.

According to Kruse et al. (2017), healthcare organizations should implement technical, physical, and administrative data safeguards to avert and recover from cybersecurity threats, including phishing, ransomware, hacking, and system disruptions.

Nurses’ involvement in healthcare technology can promote the effectiveness of various protective interventions, including data and system encryption, regular risk assessments, developing security and recovery plans, and other technical and administrative mechanisms for securing data. Improved


The failure to involve nurses in healthcare technologies can hinder systems’ functionality and outcomes. Improved workflows mean effective, timely, and convenient care practices and processes. According to Alolayyan et al. (2020), advanced technologies such as electronic health records systems (EHRS) save time, improve queue management, and enable healthcare professionals to prevent mistakes, including medication errors. Therefore, involving nurses in healthcare technology can contribute to smooth operations and translate to convenient workflows.

Reduced Costs and Increased Return on Investment

Initially, technology developers excluded nurses from healthcare technology because of the prioritization of cost over functionality and the perception that nurses lacked prerequisite technological knowledge and skills. However, it is essential to note that involving nurses in healthcare technology can reduce the costs of implementing new technologies and systems by improving systems’ functionality and reducing the subsequent necessity for workarounds (Dykes & Chu, 2020).

Further, nurses’ participation in all stages of implementing healthcare technologies can facilitate the return on investment by reducing medication errors, improving workflows, promoting patient care, and saving on the costs of compensating for medication errors.

Opportunities and Challenges

The nursing informatics specialty is ever-expanding due to the overarching need to integrate knowledge, evidence, data, and wisdom into nursing practices. Similarly, the need to leverage nursing informatics prompts nurses to familiarize themselves with emerging health information technologies like big data, data mining, and free-text analytics (Hebda et al., 2019). While these current developments present ideal opportunities for the advanced role of nurse informaticists, healthcare organizations face various challenges when integrating nursing informatics into practice.

Mitchell & Khan (2019) argue that resource constraints, staff shortages, and a lack of appropriate skill mix are challenges facing healthcare organizations when integrating new technologies into clinical practices. Therefore, it is vital to address these constraints to capitalize on the limitless emerging opportunities for nursing informatics.

Summary of Recommendations

Undoubtedly, nurse informaticists play a significant role in improving the integration of advanced health technologies, health information, data, knowledge, and wisdom into nursing practice. The possibility of leveraging nursing informatics and health technology translates to multiple benefits, including enhanced queue management, prevention of medication errors, improved decisions, and supporting the tenets of evidence-based practice.

Secondly, nurse informaticists collaborate with other staff members to oversee and promote the implementation of new technologies and systems. Interprofessional collaboration contributes to convenient workflows, nurses’ involvement in healthcare technology, and improved patient care. As a result, the organization should hire a nursing informaticist to capitalize on these opportunities and realize the return on investment for healthcare informatics and information technologies.

NURS 4040 Managing Information and Technology Assessment 1: Nursing Informatics in Healthcare References

  • Alolayyan, M., Alyahya, M., Alalawin, A., Shoukat, A., & Nusairat, F. (2020). Health information technology and hospital performance the role of health information quality in teaching hospitals. Heliyon6(10), e05040.
  • Dykes, S., & Chu, C. H. (2020). Now more than ever, nurses need to be involved in technology design: Lessons from the COVID‐19 pandemic. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 30(7-8).
  • Hebda, T., Hunter, K., & Czar, P. (2019). Handbook of informatics for nurses and healthcare professionals (6th ed.). Pearson
  • Kassam, I., Nagle, L., & Strudwick, G. (2017). Informatics competencies for nurse leaders: protocol for a scoping review. BMJ Open7(12), 1-4.
  • Kruse, C., Smith, B., Vanderlinden, H., & Nealand, A. (2017). Security techniques for electronic health records. Journal Of Medical Systems41(8), 127.
  • McGonigle, D., & Mastrian, K. G. (2018). Nursing informatics and the foundation of knowledge (4th ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.
  • Mitchell, M., & Kan, L. (2019). Digital technology and the future of health systems. Health Systems & Reform5(2), 113-120.

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