Nursing Informatics Exploratory Essay

Subject: Health Care
Type: Exploratory Essay
Pages: 5
Word count: 1320
Topics: Nursing, Job, Medical Ethics, Medicine

Essentially, nurses use vast theoretical and practical knowledge in the course of discharging their duties. It, therefore, means that knowledge is paramount in nursing practice. The modern society, which is characterized by multifaceted technological advancement in utilization modern medical equipment, require nurses to possess a considerable amount of new knowledge to offer effective health care to the patients. Therefore, nursing informatics was created to help nurses acquire new nursing knowledge based on information and communication technologies. According to Häyrinen, Saranto & Nykänen, (2008), nursing informatics science and practice incorporates nursing, nursing information, and knowledge and using information and communication technologies to manage them with the aim of enhancing patients’ health globally.

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Creating knowledge in nursing has been a top priority to enable the RN to discharge their roles effectively. Reportedly, the knowledge search is a structure. It begins by setting the data requirements. The next step encompasses extracting the information from the identified sources. Subsequently, synthesis of information is done to establish the relationships. If the knowledge is applied accordingly, wisdom will emerge automatically. Evidently, nursing informatics assists in management and communication of data, information, knowledge, and wisdom. Therefore, to appreciate how this continuum works, the current task highlights how a practicing nurse can synthesize data, information, and knowledge to get wisdom. It does this by formulating a clinical research question. This paper adopts databases where the nurse can get the data to solve the question. The paper details methods of obtaining requisite information from the articles in the databases. Furthermore, the process of structuring information to practical knowledge and its application to attain wisdom is also detailed. 

A case study of a patient will be adopted in this context to design a clinical question. The patient is called Mark Erickson. Mark was admitted in (hospital of choice), (state), with diabetes mellitus and throat cancer. Shortly after admission, the patient contracted a hospital acquired infections (HAIs), specifically, pneumonia and urinary tract infections. Mr. Mark is strict with taking his medications. Nevertheless, he is not as much corporative in keeping high hygiene standards such as hand hygiene. Therefore, it is crucial for mark to realize that the nosocomial infections that he acquired while in the hospital ward were as a result of failure to observe hygiene such as frequent hand washing. Principally, this case study shaped my research question since I was unaware of the relationship that exists between the nosocomial infections and regular hand washing. 

In the case at hand, the clinical question designed is whether there is a relationship between the standards of hygiene and the spread of hospital nosocomial infections (HAI). From my experience as a nurse, I have realized that proper hand washing is part of maintaining hygiene. For a fact, patients who maintain high hygiene standards are likely to stay free from nosocomial infections. Hand hygiene involves the first steps that patients can opt for to avoid diseases and spread of pathogens. In my place of work, nosocomial infections were rampant since many patients did not wash their hands with water and disinfectants. Rosenthal et al. (2012), postulate that 50% of the serious complications that arise during the hospitalization are as a result of nosocomial infections. However, they argue that 80% of such complications can be eradicated through proper hand washing. Apparently, hand washing is also crucial in the prevention of common cold and influenza. Nosocomial infection can be spread through patient-to-patient contact or contact with health professionals (De Angelis et al., 2014).

Despite having some knowledge about nosocomial infections, additional information is still important. For instance, information about the prevalence of nosocomial infections among patients in a variety of health facilities and a detailed profile of nosocomial infections and how they manifest in numerous circumstances. Besides, it will be critical to ascertain the role played by hand washing in the prevention of the nosocomial infections. This can be achieved by comparing the facilities with high rates of hand washing against those with lower rates. Imperially, the information obtained after the comparison that is vital in answering questions include the statistical assessment of nosocomial infections rate, hand washing observance rates and qualitative studies on the observance of hand hygiene.

I would utilize the continuum of data, information, knowledge, and wisdom to establish how to do the research. The first step would be the identification of the pertinent data required to answer the question from the numerous databases. Additionally, I would use a variety of databases to get the information. For instance, CINAHL plus, the Journal of Hygiene and Preventive  Medicine (JHPM), the National Nursing Database (NND), American Journal of Infection Control, and PubMed. These databases are crucial for the provision of information that is relevant to the control the nosocomial infections. The relevant information would be obtained by searching the databases on the current issue; the relationship between hand hygiene and nosocomial infections. The keywords include, “nosocomial infections,” “hand hygiene and nosocomial infections” and “relationship between hand hygiene and nosocomial infections.”  

The first step of extracting relevant information from the articles is to preview the articles to ascertain the chapters where information that is needed to answer the clinical question will be obtained. Subsequently, the information will then be organized into a conceptual framework to create the relationship between hand washing and transmission of nosocomial infections. Additionally, the information should also be presented in charts and graphs to identify the relationships between the research variables. Finally, the information gathered can then be turned into a useable knowledge by synthesizing it and ascertaining the connection between hand hygiene and nosocomial infections. To transform this information into the logical knowledge, this connection will be validated to form a rationale for its creation.  

I would take steps to gain wisdom by using the knowledge to manage and clarify the problems associated with nosocomial infections in the nursing practice. Besides, I would organize campaigns on the importance of washing hands to sensitize patients and care professionals on the need of washing hands in the prevention of the transmission of these pathogens. I would also advocate for wearing protective gloves among the nurses while examining patients, during blood sampling, when cleaning wounds and removal of bandages. Ideally, I would advance the theoretical knowledge to the practical application of the knowledge in healthcare facilities to prevent transmission of nosocomial infections. To achieve this, I will recommend and continuously advocate for regular and proper hand washing among the care professionals and patients in the hospitals to control transmission of nosocomial infections. I believe that this will be crucial in preventing the spread of the HAIs. Undoubtedly, the application of this knowledge will solve the human predicament, thus, qualifies categorization as wisdom. 

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In conclusion, the paper has succinctly illustrated how a practicing nurse can obtain a practical knowledge by advancing from analyzing a mere data to obtain information, knowledge, and wisdom. The essay has shown how wisdom and knowledge originate from a formal study process that deconstructs data as separate entities with objective descriptions devoid of interpretation. The analysis of the data leads to information through data interpretation, organization, and its arrangement. Therefore, information synthesis creates knowledge. When this knowledge is applied, it solves human problems and as a result, brings wisdom.

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  1. De Angelis, G., Cataldo, M. A., De Waure, C., Venturiello, S., La Torre, G., Cauda, R., & Tacconelli, E. (2014). Infection control and prevention measures to reduce the spread of vancomycin-resistant enterococci in hospitalized patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 69(5), 1185-1192.
  2. Häyrinen, K., Saranto, K., & Nykänen, P. (2008). Definition, structure, content, use, and impacts of electronic health records: a review of the research literature. International journal of medical informatics, 77(5), 291-304.
  3. Rosenthal, V. D., Bijie, H., Maki, D. G., Mehta, Y., Apisarnthanarak, A., Medeiros, E. A., & Martínez, M. D. R. G. (2012). International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium (INICC) report, data summary of 36 countries, for 2004-2009. American journal of infection control, 40(5), 396-407.
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