Nursing informatics is the use of information, technology, computer science and nursing science together to achieve effective record keeping and health care delivery through the use of computerized and automated systems. The health care system is currently attempting to move away from traditional record keeping to more efficient advanced systems. Nursing informatics aids in this transition. Informatics is the science of information and the practice of information processing.
The work achieved by nursing informatics benefits all aspects of the nursing practice — patient care, education, research and administration. The main goal of nursing informatics is to improve patient care by managing and improving the information systems that are integral in health care. Examples of jobs in the field of nursing informatics include nurse programmers who write or troubleshoot computers programs to be used by nurses, nurse communicators who determine the particular computer systems needs that nurses are facing, and nurse trainers who teach users how to implement and operate the nursing computer systems. Informatics nurses may also conduct research and identify current research problems.
It is essential for those in the field of nursing informatics to keep abreast of the latest technology. The equipment and technology being used in health care is constantly advancing and changing. In order to be effective in assuring that the most efficient information and computer systems are being used, those in nursing informatics have to consistently update their knowledge. The technological advances that nurses are utilizing more and more today include nanotechnology, wearable computers, voice-activated information systems, robotic surgery, ultrasound and imaging equipment, mobile technology, and web-based technology.
Currently, nursing informatics remains an emerging field with changes and advances occurring every day. Since 1992, the American Nursing Informatics Association (ANIA) has been providing networking, education and information resources to strengthen the roles of nurses in the field of informatics.
To become involved in nursing informatics, you will need an advanced nursing degree. The University of Phoenix offers the following online nursing degree programs:
» Bachelor of Science in Nursing (Click for more info)
» Master of Science in Nursing (Click for more info)
» Or see online LPN to BSN, RN to BSN, or general nursing programs