If you have nursing informatics certification, you can pursue a career that concentrates on seeking ways to improve communication and information management in nursing. The objective is to increase the quality of patient care while reducing costs. The work can be defined as a combination of computer science, information science, and nursing science.
A nursing informatics degree can prepare you for an exciting career at the forefront of change in nursing. And a masters nursing informatics program can put you in a leadership position so that you can lead the change in the health service. This page gives more information about the programs, the career prospects, lists schools where you can take these programs online, and more … You might also like to read the pages for associated areas such as: bioinformatics, health information technology, and medical informatics.
What is the role of nursing informatics?
Because health care providers mainly communicate with one another through comments on patient charts, a nursing informaticist continually strives to improve the accuracy, timeliness, and speed of patient charting. With better quality patient charts, the various health care professionals are able to make better choices concerning a patient’s care.
Therefore, the goal is to find ways to enhance and simplify documentation using the latest information and computer technologies. Nursing informatics enables patient records to be updated with handheld devices, voice recognition, computers, and other tools. This is far more efficient than having to handwrite notes on each patient’s chart. It also eliminates a lot of unnecessary work and facilitates easier analysis of data.
These systems must also be user-friendly in addition to being more effective. Nurses do not like using processes that are cumbersome or too complicated during the course of their duties. The reason is that it robs them of time that should be spent tending to the needs of their patients. An informaticist must also ensure that all new systems integrate easily with existing ones and that they do not disrupt the flow of the nursing process.
What do nursing informatics programs cover?
The focus is nursing informatics is to communicate and manage information, knowledge, and data to assist nurses and associated health providers in decision-making. This is accomplished through the use of information technology, information structures, and information processes. Documentation is vital in nursing informatics because the best quality patient care relies on good communication between health care providers.
A typical masters program might include: medical data; theory and applications of nursing informatics; legal and ethical issues of medical electronic data; communication skills; information system analysis and design; social and organizational issues; research skills. Students may also be required to complete a research project.
What are the career prospects?
Nurse informaticists can work in many environments. These include hospitals, clinics and other health care facilities, consulting firms, universities, or corporations that focus on the marketing and development of information systems for the health care industry. The title of a nursing informaticist will vary according to the environment in which he or she works. For example, they can be called a Clinical Analyst, a Clinical Informatics Coordinator, or an Informatics Nurse Specialist.
The roles they fill are equally varied, for example, they may be required to demonstrate new systems to staff at medical schools, hospitals, or clinics. Often, the informaticist will work closely with nurses to identify areas where changes or upgrades are needed. When these are established, new programs can be written to meet those needs. It is vital that an informaticist understands the nursing process so he or she can formulate appropriate systems. Most nursing informaticists actually start out their careers as registered nurses. Personal qualities required for this line of work are good management and people skills, creativity, and critical thinking.
In the USA, nursing informaticists are in high demand because most medical institutions are moving to computer-based records. This demand is expected to increase and therefore job opportunities are good.
What can one expect as a nursing informatics salary? With this increasing demand in nursing informatics jobs, people holding a degree in nursing informatics, especially those with a Masters degree, can expect to earn more than $75,000 a year.
List of schools and programs