- According to a study from the Vendome Group, electronic nursing documentation systems are the most commonly used form of technology for nurses. A nurse can access a computer to record everything she does for the patient, review information entered by other members of the health care team and see results of lab tests and x-rays. Nurses also appreciate technology that allows physicians to enter their orders directly into a computer in a legible, easily transmitted fashion.
- Nursing is a labor-intensive occupation that lends itself to the application of time-saving technology designed to make patient care more efficient and effective. When a nurse attaches electrodes to a patient and captures data about heart rate, blood pressure, respiration and oxygen saturation, he has a real-time picture of his patient's status. Instead of running back to the bedside every 15 minutes to take vital signs, he can remotely view monitor readings. Automated alarms that sound when a patient's vital signs go outside a desired range provide an added layer of safety.
- Technology has played a leading role in a transformation of nursing care within hospitals. Many patients who were previously admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) can now be safely housed on a regular medical-surgical floor where their vital signs are closely monitored. In many ways, technology provides the nurse with an extra set of eyes on her patient
- Advances in technology allow nurses to provide increasingly complex care to patients in a more mobile fashion. Rather than being chained to a desk and telephone at the nurses' station, a nurse can use a computer on wheels (COW) to look up information at the patient's bedside. She can contact another nurse via cell phone when she needs help at the bedside.
- Electronic medication administration systems (eMARs) use bar-code technology to allow the nurse to scan his patient's wristband, a medication label and a medication record. By ensuring that all three bar codes match, the eMAR system helps a nurse give the right drug to the right patient at the right time. Technological advances like these improve patient safety and reduce complications during a hospital stay.