How Technology is Impacting Nursing Practice in 2023
January 05, 2023
Technology will overwhelmingly impact the nursing profession as we enter 2023. As it evolves, hospitals continue to be overrun by the high volume of patients they see daily. By using the latest advancements, nurses on the front line will be able to serve their patients more effectively and efficiently. Technological advances continue to transform the medical landscape, but it has both benefits and challenges. Emerging technologies include electronic recordkeeping and providing patients with more access to their data. Still, some hospitals will have to deal with those who are not as open to adopting new technology.
Here is a look at how today's current technologies are impacting nursing practices:
Benefits of Nursing Technology
There are many benefits as new technologies emerge that will make nurses' daily duties more manageable. In the new year, there will continue to be more shifts in the nursing field because of technological advances and recent trends in healthcare. Below are the benefits of new technologies emerging:
There is now more accessibility for nurses as new technologies emerge. Electronic health records (EHRs), digital records of a patient's medical history, have transformed the medical field and made the workload easier for nurses. It will improve a nurse's duties as it can improve the accuracy and clarity of their patients’ records and makes their data more accessible.
There is now the opportunity to reduce errors when using new technologies in nursing. Nurses who work long shifts and continue to have understaffed units are more susceptible to making mistakes with their patients. Technology can handle some day-to-day tasks that take up a nurse's time. For example, an automated IV pump can give patients the proper medication dosage at a scheduled time, relieving a nurse of that duty.
With healthcare facilities using more technology, it allows them to increase their overall communication. They can utilize team collaboration tools, instant messaging applications, headsets, or an intercom system to communicate quicker in real time. This will allow them to better coordinate care, especially when handing over patients between different departments and new shifts.
Impact of Telehealth
The introduction of telehealth has provided many benefits in the nursing profession, allowing nurses to reach patients in rural areas. Telehealth benefits those affected by the nursing shortage as it reduces the number of patient visits and can reduce healthcare costs for healthcare executives. Patients can access healthcare from their very own homes with telehealth.
Challenges of Nursing Technology
Along with any positives come negatives as well. As technologies continue to evolve and grow, there are challenges that hospitals should be aware of before introducing multiple technological systems into their facilities. They should also ensure their staff is aware of the risks of emerging technologies and have a backup plan in case any issues arise.
Limited Human Interaction
Technology can threaten human interaction between nursing staff and their patients. Nurses must create a relationship with their patients as it improves a patient's overall experience at the facility. Patients rely on their nurses to explain their medication, take their vitals, and are also available for emotional support. Most of this can't be completed with technology.
Privacy and Security Concerns
As new technologies emerge, privacy and security concerns are constantly threatened, especially when dealing with personal patient information. Digital records are kept in the cloud or a computer's data system, which is more susceptible to hacking. Being hacked is not impossible, as patient profiles and their data provide valuable information that can be sold. Healthcare facilities will need to have an airtight security system to ensure nothing happens to their data.
Reluctance to New Technology
As new technology emerges, the generational gap among nursing staff will become more prevalent. Currently, baby boomers make up a majority of RN staff at hospitals and may be more reluctant to adapt to new devices and technology. These technological advancements may also cause older nurses to retire as they feel too much is changing.
Threat to Nursing Positions
As new technologies emerge, there is a potential threat to nurses and their job positions. Although it won't happen soon, new technologies will continue cutting nursing duties. There will continue to be more technology incorporated into their daily routines. More technology introduced will allow nurses to see more patients daily, administer medications better, and more competently monitor their patients.
The Bottom Line
In the following year, technology will impact the nursing profession and nursing staff across the country. Advancements in technology will play a significant role in allowing nursing staff to connect with more patients and make their information more accessible. Overall, if technology can improve patient care and experience, nursing staff should be more open to these advancements. Technological advances are becoming more popular as facilities integrate new programs into their health systems.