What are some of the most eye-catching emerging technologies in nursing?
Nursing is a profession that plays a vital role within healthcare. It is also a role that makes great use of emerging technologies for patient care. By using the newest and best tech in their jobs, nurses are better able to deliver good patient outcomes and work more efficiently.
As both tech and nursing are fast-moving sectors, it is no surprise that new technologies in the nursing industry are emerging constantly. This is not just a good thing for patient care but also helps make nursing more attractive to move into as a career. Although some might move into nursing right after college, many switch into this type of role from other industries. An accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (ABSN), such as the one offered by Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, has been specifically designed for those who have already completed a degree in another field and are now considering a second career nurse role.
Whatever path you take to get into nursing, having access to some of the latest technological advancements make it an exciting industry to work in. But what are some of the most eye-catching examples to know about?
Telehealth is certainly one of the most exciting new technologies within nursing and something that is having a transformative impact. In essence, it refers to patients being able to access care digitally and without having to attend appointments in person. As you may expect, telehealth relies on the internet, mobile devices/computers/laptops and videoconferencing platforms to operate.
Electronic health records
Next to telehealth, electronic health records are one of the newest technologies in nursing that has generated lots of headlines. This essentially refers to a digital way of recording, storing and viewing patient notes.
Automated IV pumps
Another great example of new tech making waves in nursing are automated IV pumps. These work exactly as they sound and give patients automated doses of prescribed IV medication at set times/intervals. Some IV pumps like this will also come with monitoring capability, so they can alert nursing staff if there is a problem with the pump.
VR is not a new technology, in general terms, but has only recently started to emerge within healthcare. For nursing, virtual reality is slowly being rolled out to facilitate training around practical nursing tasks. This includes things like administering injections or inserting catheters. In addition, VR in nursing is superb for continuous professional development and enabling already qualified nurses to pick up new skills.
While all the above are great examples of emerging technologies within nursing, you may still wonder why people are so excited by them. This mainly comes down to the benefits they bring and how they are changing nursing for the better.
But just how is emerging tech changing the face of this industry?
- Better accessibility for nurses and patients
The latest tech in this sector enables nurses to access patient data more easily and from wherever they might be. Electronic Health Records are a prime example of this and give nursing staff the ability to access the latest patient notes when treating someone.
Of course, emerging technologies in nursing also have a beneficial effect for patient accessibility. Telehealth, for example, means that people who live in very rural areas can get medical advice from nurses via their laptops or mobile devices.
- Improved communication around the nursing sector
Any professional nurse knows how important effective good communication is. Good communication ensures they work closely with colleagues and stay in the loop about patients they are treating. At a managerial level, it allows nursing leaders to pass on messages to staff in a clear, concise and suitable manner.
There is no doubt that emerging technology within the nursing sector has greatly helped improve communication. Being able to conduct online meetings, for example, allows for more effective communication between nursing staff and other colleagues who might be involved in the care of a particular patient.
- Reduction of mistakes
There is no doubt that nurses do a wonderful job and work long hours in often-challenging conditions. They are only human, though, and this can sometimes see errors creep into patient care. Emerging tech has changed this part of nursing for the better and helps reduce the number of mistakes that may otherwise occur.
New technologies (such as automated IV pumps) can manage many day-to-day tasks for nurses and ensure they are always done correctly. This leads to less mistakes in patient care and frees up nurses to spend time on more complex tasks.
- New tech helps nursing evolve
Incorporating the best new innovations has enabled nursing to move with the times and evolve to meet the demands of modern society. This is very important because a nursing sector that did not use tech to do this would feel outdated. This could put people off from seeking treatment from nursing staff or not trust that they have the best tools for the job.
The importance of new technologies for nursing’s future is clear when you look back at the history of this profession. Nursing in the 1980s, for example, had moved on from the earliest days of Florence Nightingale, to remain relevant. This is just as true currently, and using the best new technologies is key for not only maintaining nursing’s reputation but encouraging new nurses into the sector.
Technology and nursing are a perfect match
The above not only shows some of the most eye-catching examples of emerging tech around nursing but also sums up how they are changing the sector. Without these kinds of exciting new developments, the industry would look a lot different and would struggle to survive over time.