Every year, the 12th of May, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, is celebrated as International Nurses Day. Did you pause to think about the role and the positive contribution nurses make to our society by helping all those around them?
Yesterday we observed a day for those heroes who relentlessly work for humanity. I was reading an article about honouring nurses and a quote left a lasting impression on me: “If you save one life you are Hero, but if you save 100 lives you are a Nurse”.
Every year, the International Nurses Day has a particular theme and this year it is ‘Nursing: The Balance of Mind, Body and Spirit.’
A nurse always acts as a bridge between physicians and patients. It is a demanding job, which requires paying attention to patients, and being empathetic to the patient’s problems. Nurses are one of the major and most important resources in the healthcare industry. With constantly changing processes and continuing developments in hospitals, they must be perfect jugglers – balancing the need to meet the expectations of both hospital management and patients whilst providing an even more complex art – patient care.
Over the last 15 years, we have seen how technology is helping patients and physicians deliver better care and reduce healthcare expenses. In my opinion, more needs to be done to help nurses avail the benefits of technology. From 2000 to 2010, we experienced the rise of basic healthcare systems to capture patient’s data. During this period, we also experienced many changes in healthcare compliances. These changes increased the administrative workload of nurses. Nurses were met with the challenge to arm themselves with computer skills for routine tasks.
From 2010 to 2016, this workload increased by a manifold as the penetration of technology in hospitals increased at a pace that was hitherto unimaginable. I am of the opinion that nurses should majorly focus on patient care (interact with patients, understand their feelings, support patients at emotional level) because these activities require human touch, rather than them focussing administrative tasks. We at Nitor believe that technology will continue to evolve nursing; it will provide the ability for nurses to complete their jobs accurately and efficiently.
Voicebots : Documenting and capturing patient information through voice bots and their integration with hospital systems could go a long way in easing their work.
Telemedicine: Using effective tools like telemedicine, nurses can consult patients with minor illness, reaching remote patients, hospice/ home health patients etc. This will drastically reduce the travelling time spent on patient visits.
IOT in medical devices: Helping nurses capture patient’s data real time can make them far more self-reliant. Nowadays many medical device manufacturers are building BLE (Bluetooth enabled device) medical devices. Nurses can capture a patient’s real time vital stats as it directly transmits data into the iPAD or mobile app in a far more secured way.
Robotics: Elevating the standards of care can help nurses control their day-to day tasks better. One of the most interesting technological advances – ‘The Xenex robot’ helps keep the highest level of hygiene. Additionally, different robotic technologies can help nurses do their daily tasks more efficiently.
A plethora of questions seems to be plaguing the healthcare industry, ones mostly revolving around education and culture. The healthcare industry is slowly coming to terms with the need to equip nurses with technology in order to resolve patient care issues. This will help improve patient safety, as well as tackle some of the issues and gaps in care that have such distressing effects on people’s health and experience.
We need an enormous army of nurses with the ability to understand the influence of technology on healthcare quality and methods to promote their use.
As someone wisely said, nurses dispense comfort, compassion and caring even without a prescription, isn’t it about time we did the same? What do you think? Let me know by writing to us!