Telenursing: Is It In My Future?
April 14, 2016
The purpose of this paper is to provide a discussion regarding the question, Telenursing: Is It in My Future? The Accountable Care Act reform that has reformed and expanded health care main focus is to make health care available and accessible to the uninsured, underinsured, underserved and various population in the United States of America.
According to Hebda, T & Czar, P. (2013), “At this point in time many facilities are still working toward implementing information systems and getting those systems to exchange data with other systems within their working environment (Hebda, T. & Czar, P p269, 2013)”.
In the American Telemedicine definition, Telenursing is defined as the utilization of medical information being exchanged from one provider Health Information Technology (HIT) site to another to another through electronic communication for the improvement of patients’ health status.
Telenursing is definitely in my future of nursing. The implementation of Telenursing can be seen in a gradual process universally and globally to treat many diagnoses including Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Some studies have attempted to look at models and frameworks that review evidence-based Telenursing in patients at home diagnosed with COPD such as “Home Telehealth for Patients with Chronic Obstructive Disease (COPD) An Evidence-Based Analysis (Franek J. The Health Quality Ontario, 2012)”
Based on this analysis, recommendations were made to address access and provision of Telenursing/Telehealth services in Ontario, Canada.
Advantages of Telenursing
The many advantages of Telenursing from the nurse’s perspective include some of the following:
- Telenursing encourages and facilitates the nurse to be able to compare the patient’s current data with data from previous occurrences,
- It fosters the support of ongoing record of the patient’s education and learning encounters and visits with valuable clinical feedback,
- It saves manpower hours, and resources by eliminating the need for repetitive collection of baseline demographic data with each visit or encounter,
- Telenursing provides the nurse with prompt administration and documentation of medications and treatments,
- It provides proper documentation and quality care, and
- Telenursing supports the nurse to develop a database that facilitates critical and clinical pathways, research, useful clinical information for both clinicians and administrators, and allows the nurse to be able to measure work in quantifiable units using a common structure and acceptable nursing language.
From the patient’s perspective, the patient should be the essence of Telenursing and there are many advantages to the patient. Some of the advantages are stated as follow:
- The comfort and safety of being in their own home and receiving quality nursing care,
- No wait time for treatment in the usage of Telenursing,
- Increase access and control regarding their own health information,
- The apparent decrease in turnaround time for ordered treatments,
- Improved medications safety and understanding of treatment choices and
- Greater empowerment for one’s own care and alerts and reminders regarding appointments, preventive care, and scheduled tests.
The disadvantages from the nurse’s perspective is the nursing profession not aggressively participating in the design of interfaces, usability and interoperability of Telenursing. The profession recruitment of nurses needs to be augmented to provide input during the design stages of Telenursing systems organizational wide just as and equal to the level of other stakeholders to identify and define data sets and elements that are to transform the usability and interoperability of Telenursing.
Given the patient’s perspective, I think the disadvantages can be seen on many levels of Telenursing. However, the foremost is the accessibility and affordability of the equipment needed for Telenursing in the patient’s home. Additionally, comprehension and demonstration of how to use and operate the equipment could become culturally disadvantaged and challenging to some patients. The understanding of the Health Information Portability and Accountable Act (HIPAA) regulations needs to be fully understood by patients in terms of who their health information should be shared with.
In conclusion, Telenursing will provide unlimited future opportunities for nurses who want to acquire leadership roles. It will lead the way for nursing leaders to participate in ethical and legal policies development and actively advocate on behalf of the profession regarding legislation that will impact Telenursing. Conversely, Telenursing will ensure the profession to collaborate with developers of information technology systems to strengthen privacy and security of health information during usability and operability of Computer Information Systems.
Hebda, T., & Czar, P. (2013). Handbook of informatics for nurses & healthcare professionals (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
Chamberlain College of Nursing. (2015). NR-361. Lesson 2 Information Systems in Healthcare. Downers Grove, IL: DeVry Education Group.
Ontario Health Technology Assessment Service. 2012; 12(11): 1-58 Publish online 2012 Mar 1.
Copyright 2012, The Health Quality Ontario.
Telemedicine Journal And E-Health: The Official Journal Of The American Telemedicine
Association [Telemed J E Health} 2015 May; Vol. 21 (5), pp 364-73.
Herbert J. Rogove, David McArthur, Bart M. Demaerschalk, and Paul M. Vespa. Telemedicine and e-Health. January/February 2012, 18 (1): 48053. Doi: 10.1089/tmj. 2011.0071.
About the Author:
Mr. Vonjo R. Tommy is a licensed Professional Registered Nurse, and a Health Planner and Administrator. Vonjo is a graduate of the University of Liberia (1984) with a Bachelor of Business Administration, BBA in Management with a minor in Economics. He earned his graduate degree in Health Planning and Administration from the University of Leeds; Leeds, England. He matriculated to the College of Staten Island, City University of New York, CUNY and earned an Associate in Applied Science with emphasis in Nursing. In 2015, Duke University School of Nursing awarded Vonjo a graduate certificate in Population Health Management. In February 2016, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with the President's Honor from Chamberlain College of Nursing, and is currently enrolled in the Master of Science in Nursing to Doctorate in Nursing Practice Program at Chamberlain College of Nursing. Currently, Vonjo works at the Visiting Nurse Service of New York in New York City as a Clinical Utilization Manager, RN and holds a Certification in Case Management, CCM. Please reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.