Paper about EHRs.
Electronic health records are something that many hospitals and care facilities use every day. Electronic Health Records provide easily accessible information on patients with a simple click on the computer. Any information can be available. This includes the patients past medical history, the patients previous admission statuses, recent labs as well as doctors orders. An EHR is extremely similar to paper charting except that it is on the computer, often using the internet. This allows for it to be easier to read, navigate, enter data and organize.
My personal experiences with EHRs is extremely positive. Filing information electronically, at least at my place of employment as well as my clinical sites, is an awesome way to make sure things are entered in an organizes, referenceable fashion. It is extremely convenient to have previous entries for vital signs (for example) lined up next to the new entry. This makes for easy reference and detection of changes. EHRs also increase productivity in my experience. I have noticed that the organization or the facilities is noticeably worse when they have paper charting. Everything seems to get done at a slower, more disorganized rate. With electronic charting, there really is no loss of information because it is all right in the computer.
It is my strong belief that all institutions should embrace and promote electronic charting. Nurses should be at the forefront of this movement because they will be the ones “running the show” , so to speak, when it comes to entering and interpreting information. It is the nurses job to assess and report findings, why not have them design a program that fits their needs most? No one knows what is easier for a nurse than a nurse. An organized system can help up productivity, minimize communication errors due to illegibility and misinterpretation in paper charting. An EHR can provide a powerful tool to unify the nursing processes into one collected database and promote more time spent on research as well. An EHR could be shared with other organizations and institutions with a single click, which also ups the productivity of accomplishing nursing goals in a timely manner. With an EHR doctors and nurses on opposite sides of the world could interpret results and findings at the same time if the program allowed. This can only help the nursing profession. My opinion is that it should be mandatory and universal to hold entire records online, for the sake of patient safety and nursing productivity.