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Technological advancements have influenced medical field in different ways. Nursing informatics and several online social media systems have immeasurable effects on quality delivery in nursing practice and in enhancing quality person-centred health care. EPAS is one of the electronic systems that provides an integrated electronic system. EPAS offers complete and consistent electronic health records for every patient admitted to the south Australian health service or public hospitals. The system was introduced in August 2013 by at the Noarlunga Hospital and has been efficient in providing current medical information of the patients and ordering medications and tests as well as providing clinical documentation (Kaufman, N., 2010, 42). The system is safe and efficient and effective in offering person centred care because of it fully connects the health care system. Like the EPAS system, social media has also played a major role in the provision of quality person centred health care. For instance, a Cystic Fibrosis cite on Facebook has played an important role in the connecting hundreds of patients with cystic fibrosis together with doctors. This essay offers an elaborate description of the person-centred care and its principles, and description of EPAS system and the social media and their impacts on the provision of quality person-centred care.
Person-Centred Care and its Principles
According to the Australian College of Nursing (ACN), person-centred care is an important principle that governs the delivery of quality nursing care and the general health care. Person-centred care refers to treating every person as an individual, protecting the person’s dignity, respecting the person’s preferences and rights as well as developing a therapeutic relationship between the care recipient and care provider that is built on understanding and mutual trust. Person-centred care considers the personal needs, rights, and considerations as the central principles that govern nursing and general health care. The idea of personal needs was articulated by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia’s professional practice framework (Stanghellini, G., Bolton, D. and Fulford, W.K. 2013, 292).
Research by Xu, Y. and He, F. (2012, 275), shows that person-centred care positively affects the nurses’ job satisfaction and leads to an improved health care delivery. For instance, person- centred care has led to the reduction in mortality due to myocardial infarction, decrease in hospital acquired infections, and decrease in admission rates for the aged as well as improvement on family care experience. Person-centred care has several principles governing service provision. The first principle emphasizes on the respect of personal values, expressed needs and preferences. This involves involving the patient in making decisions and recognizing the individuals and their own unique preferences and values. The patients ought to be treated with dignity and sensitivity to the patient’s cultural values (Zuniga, A.E.F., Win, K.T. and Susilo, W. 2010, 975).
Second is the principle coordination and care integration in order to reduce the patient’s feelings of vulnerability. The third principle emphasizes on education and information. The patient should be given an opportunity to express their feelings, worries, conditions, and prognosis. The hospitals may use three methods of communication that include information on clinical progress, information on care processes, and information facilitating autonomy, health promotion, and self-care. Fourth is the principle of physical comfort (Christensen, H. and Hickie, I.B. 2010, 319). Care providers should help the patients in pain management, assistance with their daily needs and activities as well as providing an effective surrounding. Other principles include the emotional support and alleviation of anxiety and fear, the involvement of family and friends in the patient’s care, continuity, and transition, and care access (Stanghellini, G., Bolton, D. and Fulford, W.K. 2013, 287).
Informatics System: EPAS
Enterprise Patient Administration System (EPAS) is a South Australian electronic health care record system that provides an efficient record keeping service for every patient admitted to the south Australian hospital. The system is one of the most significant informatics in Australia that has helped in coordinating and connecting the health care facilities in South Australia. In enhancing person-based care, EPAS plays a notable role that seen the clinicians improve their service delivery in relation to person-based care. The system input data and have an access to all patient information, can order tests and medications, view the taste results, and can enter any medical documentation at any site that is connected to EPAS. EPAS benefits south Australian patients in different ways. For instance, the patient has their records electronically recorded and can be accessed and viewed by different administrative staff and clinicians across South Australia (Schneider, Z. and Whitehead, D. 2013, 12). The system allows access to patient information at any given time and this facilitates patient treatment.
Second, EPAS provides patient security and safety. For instance, the health care professionals are able to access the patient’s complete medical records as they move from one health care facility to the next. Therefore, the patient can be treated in any hospital in South Australia safely due to the availability of previous medical information. The patient does not have to worry or fear any complications arising from allergies and related issues. EPAS meets the person-centred care principle of coordination and care integration (Leake, K. 2009, 3). The feelings of vulnerability are removed and the patient gains some confidence on the service providers. EPAS takes care of the patient’s worries, fears, and needs to be based on their condition and prognosis.
EPAS promotes person-based care through education and information. EPAS informs the medical providers on the patient’s care processes and information thus promoting autonomy and health promotion. Information and education kept by EPAS also help the patients to practice self-care. For instance, the patient may choose to manage their condition by ensuring their physical comfort. They may use the information provided to manage their pain and look for assistance on their daily needs. EPAS enhances continuity and transition in care access (Kaufman, N., 2010, 42). The patient is assured of medical continuity at any given time and place. A patient does not have to worry about accessing treatment or medication when they travel to any part of South Australia at any given time because they are assured of access and care continuity.
EPAS provides a timely information that is relevant for development and delivery of health strategies. The system also facilitates research development in care provision. Such researches and developments aim at enhancing person-centred care for South Australians. The patients are safe from the tedious process of constantly repeating their medical history and personal details. On the side of care givers, EPAS helps the clinicians to improve on their work practice and processes. Coordination of health services is simplified by the increased accuracy and timeliness of medical history and the general patient information at the time of treatment. EPAS also provides patient information required by the clinicians to make decisions and monitor the patient progress. Clinicians are able to understand when care is needed and how it should be delivered. Clinicians can also view the patient management across South Australia and this enhances care continuity and is able to make online referrals where necessary (Johnstone, M.J. 2015, 10). EPAS helps the caregivers reduce the waiting list thus removing the patient’s anxiety. Clinicians are able to meet the needs of individual patients without delay.
EPAS disseminate patient information to all the public hospitals in South Australia. The transmission is efficient and consistent with minimal risks. It also offers opportunities for medical practitioners to research more in the related fields. Clinicians are able to build therapeutic relationships with their clients and also with their colleagues. However, there are potential risks associated with the EPAS system. Although the system is efficient in the provision of information, the clinicians risk exposing patient’s medical information to the wrong people (Panattoni, L.E., Vaithianathan, R., Ashton, T. and Lewis, G.H. 2011, 45). Such risks affect the patient confidentiality and may influence the patient’s perception of the whole system. Despite the few challenges, EPAS informatics system is efficient and effective in enhancing communication and information delivery.
Online Social Media System: Facebook
Social media plays a great role across all the fields ranging from social, financial to political aspects. Social media provides a wealth of information regarding care provision. Social media offers the opportunity for the clinician to understand the patient perspective relating to their healthcare and their perception on the quality care. The clinicians may track the patient’s reviews and comments in order to understand their reactions, strengths, and areas of improvement. Social media can be used to streamline or supplement the care provided to the patient. In the medical field, social media can provide a picture of the patient’s position in regard to the health. Caregivers can use social media to gain information about the patient’s psychological state, hope, and frustrations and in the process, they can look for alternative ways of helping the frustrated patients (Christensen, H. and Hickie, I.B. 2010, 53). The health care systems have shifted their focus from face to face meetings to social media where they can meet their patients and offer prescriptions without going through the lengthy procedures and wasting time. Social media has improved quality and the overall safety of the health care delivery through provision and access of information. The patient and the care giver can engage in an open dialogue where they can communicate their views, questions, and worries and receive a constant feedback.
We can do it today.
Facebook is one of the most popular social media groups that has helped in enhancing quality and effective person-centred care. For instance, the Cystic Fibrosis Trust group on Facebook helps in connecting patients with Cystic Fibrosis, caregivers and clinicians. The group provides information to patients on the disease, patient experiences, and treatment. The group is also made up of groups and individual who are researching on the cure of the disease. Members of the group organize video breakout sessions that range from getting a transplant, mental health, and motivating patients to do some exercises. The page creates awareness to the general public and offers hope to the patients.
Facebook enhances communication by allowing patients, medical students, and nurses to communicate. Social media helps the nurses to connect with their peers anywhere in the world and in the process, they are able to share their experiences. Nurses may share their experiences on how best to offer person-centred care and their expected outcomes. Clinicians may also learn about their patient’s perceptions, cultural beliefs, and attitudes from their Facebook pages. Exchange of ideas between clinicians is important in enhancing better service delivery. Conferences that could have taken a lot of time have been simplified and are now held online with minimal costs. Such information I necessary for care givers in order to offer effective services to the patient. Professional networking is one of the most important aspects of Facebook where medical practitioners meet and train each other.
Facebook offers healthcare guidance. In the age of technology, social media has become the best platform where health information is conveyed. Information on person-based care is all over the Facebook with clinicians offering directives on how patients can manage their conditions and the general information regarding their conditions. Patients can be diagnosed online and given the right prescriptions by medical personnel through Facebook. Many care providers are using their Facebook pages to enlighten and encourage people to protect themselves from dangerous diseases as well as how to manage their medical condition (Hogan, B. and Quan-Haase, A. 2010, 311). Medical practitioners are able to win the trust and confidence of their patients whenever they advise them in regard to condition. Facebook also offers a better connectivity between the patients and caregivers. For instance, Facebook allows the doctors to schedule their time with their patients and also provides them with an opportunity to do some follow up. Facebook like other social media services is a platform that provides patients and doctors with access to the latest information regarding the disease and treatment. One of the major concerns Facebook and the social media in general arises from the failure of the public to trust the social media. Facebook is known for propaganda and other vices and this may hinder the public from trusting the information from the social media (Buni, C. and Chemaly, S. 2014, 9).
Person-centred care has revolutionized the medical field with its important principle of meeting the patient’s needs and preferences. Healthcare practitioners have attempted to meet the person-centred care principles through the use of modern technology. For instance, the use of EPAS, an Australian based system, south Australian clinicians have ensured connectivity and clear communication among themselves and also with their patients. EPAS stores up the patient’s medical information that can be accessed at any time in different public hospitals within South Australia. The system enhances care provision with minimal concerns from the patients and the general public. Facebook, on the other hand, is an example of how social media has greatly contributed to quality service delivery in the medical field. Several Facebook pages have been created to address different medical issues. However, there are several ethical concerns affecting Facebook that has affected its effectiveness as a tool for health care communication.
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