Without the involvement of nurses at every level, the field of health information technology (IT) would not be successful, according to a number of recent reports.
Nurses are on the front lines when it comes to designing, implementing and using health IT. Nurse clinicians enter data into electronic health records (EHR) and help educate patients on the use of personal health records. Nurse managers oversee the electronic documentation completed by other nursing staff. The nurse informaticists help develop, implement and optimize HIT systems.
According to a report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), nurses are not only vital to the creation and implementation of health IT systems, but also to the surveillance and interception of medical errors. Health IT use by nurses also puts them in a position to better facilitate care processes and support more patient-centered care, according to the RWJF. Health IT also helps reduce the amount of time nurses spend on clinical documentation, freeing up more of their time to spend with patients.