Proposal to Set up a Dialysis Unit in the Hospital Utilizing Nursing informatics

In a 4- to 5-page project proposal written to the leadership of your healthcare organization, propose a nursing informatics project for your organization that you advocate to improve patient outcomes or patient care efficiency. Your project proposal should include the following:

· Describe the project you propose.

· Identify the stakeholders impacted by this project.

Answer

Proposal to Set up a Dialysis Unit in the Hospital Utilizing Nursing informatics

Leveraging nursing informatics is a profound strategy for improving care quality and informing clinical decisions. Healthcare professionals are responsible for utilizing nursing information and knowledge to make data-driven decisions and improve care delivery amidst increased demands for quality, timely, and convenient care. McGonigle & Mastrian (2018) define nursing informatics (NI) as “a specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage, and communicate data, information, knowledge, and wisdom in nursing practice” (p. 309). This definition necessitates the presence of appropriate information management systems in healthcare settings, including advanced information technologies such as electronic health records (EHRs), to ensure effective management and utilization of clinical information and data. With the background knowledge of prerequisite technologies for nursing informatics, it is possible to set up a dialysis unit within the hospital that will share the same healthcare system and electronic health record (EHR) to ensure interoperability capabilities. Therefore, this paper describes the project, identifies the technologies required to implement it, explains the project’s potential impacts on patient outcomes, and the role of interdisciplinary team members in implementing and sustaining the project.

Description of the Project

The project entails setting up a dialysis unit within the hospital while utilizing nursing informatics. It is essential to note that most dialysis units/clinics and hospitals do not belong to the same healthcare system or share electronic health records. In this sense, most dialysis clinics operate as separate units with contextualized healthcare systems (Vandenberg et al., 2021). Although different dialysis units have unique health information systems, they may lack the interoperability capabilities that enable timely and convenient information exchange across hospital units. This factor compromises the tenets of care coordination and continuity.

With the background knowledge of the rationale for promoting service interoperability across units and among healthcare organizations, it will be possible to set up a dialysis unit within the hospital to ensure convenient care and quality services for in-and-outpatients. Therefore, setting up a dialysis unit will include various steps, including consolidating and installing necessary health information technologies, involving relevant stakeholders, and bolstering their ability to utilize these technologies to provide care to patients in need of dialysis services. Regarding the technological requirements, it will be essential to install computer systems, monitoring devices that will ensure instant transmission of physiological data (blood pressure, weight, and heart rate), and components of telehealth technology, including portable laptops, wearable monitor smartphones, cameras, and a mobile e-health application to ensure care coordination, workflow management, and timely communication.

Secondly, it will be essential to educate healthcare professionals about the usability of unit equipment, including dialyzers and components of the newly- installed health information system. The project implementation team will rely massively upon support from the hospital in terms of resources, legal compliance, procurement, and staffing needs. After complimenting the project, nursing informaticists and information technology experts will collaborate with other stakeholders in assessing the usability of equipment and systems in the unit to establish their readiness for care delivery.

Stakeholders Impacted by the Project

The project will impact various stakeholders, including nephrology nurses, nephrologists, nurse informaticists, the IT team, medical assistants, and the supporting staff members like scheduling representatives, receptionists, and care coordinators. It is essential to note that utilizing nursing informatics in the new dialysis unit will support the triage system by enabling receptionists and nurse informaticists to update nurses and nephrologists on patients’ needs and priorities upon entry to the team. Also, it will facilitate timely communication with the hospital, proper record keeping, and care coordination between healthcare professionals to improve patient outcomes. Therefore, everyone should actively participate in the project to ensure its implementation and sustenance.

Patient Outcomes and Patient-Care Efficiencies

The widespread impacts of nursing informatics in improving patient outcomes and enhancing care efficiencies inspire the project. According to Hueso et al. (2020), digitalization and the subsequent development of computer technology are among the new norms in healthcare systems. In this sense, healthcare is becoming a data-dependent sector, mainly due to the involvement of digital networks, fast advances in medical data acquisition methods, and multiple capabilities facilitated by adopting electronic medical records (EMRs) (Hueso et al., 2020). It is essential to note the ever-increasing need for technology-mediated dialysis services for patients grappling with various healthcare conditions, including end-stage renal disease and chronic renal failure. According to Vadakedath & Kandi (2017), chronic renal failure (CRF) is a global health problem with adverse ramifications, including increased care costs, compromised quality of life, prolonged hospitalization, and disproportionate effects on the elderly population. On the other hand, Elshahat et al. (2020) contend that chronic kidney disease (CKD) affects about 10% of the global population and is the 16th leading cause of death. The researchers add that the condition will be the 5th leading cause of death by 2040 if healthcare professionals and organizations fail to implement evidence-based preventive, management, and control interventions.

Consequently, dialysis emerges as the most profound treatment approach for kidney-related diseases. Further, integrating nursing informatics and advanced health information technologies in dialysis units can translate to improved patient outcomes and patient-care efficiencies. Hueso et al. (2020) contend that e-health and remote health models for dialysis units enable nephrologists to access intuitive software and interfaces that connect to different treatments and monitoring devices that promote instant transmission of physiological data. Secondly, nephrologists can leverage these connections to monitor resources and clinical productivity indicators and ensure sustainable distribution of resources. Thirdly, e-health models support self-management interventions by enabling healthcare professionals in the dialysis unit to collaborate with patients in enhancing their knowledge and awareness of self-care processes (Hueso et al., 2020). Therefore, implementing this project consistently enhances process efficiency, promotes interprofessional communication and collaboration, improves care quality, and enhances remote care coordination.

Technologies Required to Implement the Project

The requisite technologies needed in this project include dialyzers and a functional clinical information system (CIS). For instance, the CIS will consolidate all data-management modalities and technologies, including computer systems, mobile e-health applications, electronic health records (EHR), electronic medical records (EMR), and telehealth components such as camera systems and wearable monitor smartphones. Further, healthcare professionals in the dialysis unit will access portable laptops with appropriate operational systems such as Mac OS to ensure their compatibility with the clinical information system (CIS). Proper orientation and staff training will be essential in enhancing the functionality of new devices and technological systems.

Project Team

Notably, an interdisciplinary team comprising nephrologists, nephrology nurses, medical assistants, nurse informaticists, IT experts, and support staff will ensure the effective implementation and sustenance of the proposed project. Each team member will play a significant role in providing quality care delivery to patients with various kidney-related conditions, promoting technologies’ usability, and enhancing process efficiency. For example, nephrologists, nephrology nurses, medical assistants, and support staff members like receptionists will collaborate in forming the triage system that will provide care to patients based on their priorities and needs. According to Poyah & Quraishi (2020), triage systems in dialysis units reduce the wait time for healthcare services and can improve emergency care. Therefore, involving relevant stakeholders in timely patient data recording and information sharing can improve outcomes and enhance care quality.

On the other hand, nursing informaticists and the IT team will play a significant role in educating, orienting, and training other stakeholders on the usability of new technologies, including ways to detect malfunctions and report system failures. According to McGonigle & Mastrian, 2018), nurse informaticists are responsible for collaborating with the IT team to spearhead any system change and upgrade systems to improve process efficiency and service quality. Therefore, they provide technical support and knowledge necessary for proper functioning health information technologies and systems.

Conclusion

The proposed project aims to set up a dialysis unit within the hospital to ensure timely and convenient care of patients with kidney-related complications requiring dialysis. This project relies massively on integrating nursing informatics to improve health decisions and processes. Therefore, the implementation team must install advanced health information technologies, provide necessary devices that support information-sharing modalities in the unit and the hospital, and establish stakeholders’ roles in facilitating project implementation and sustenance. Therefore, this paper describes the project, identifies the technologies required to implement it, explains the project’s potential impacts on patient outcomes, and the role of interdisciplinary team members in implementing and sustaining the project.

References

Elshahat, S., Cockwell, P., Maxwell, A. P., Griffin, M., O’Brien, T., & O’Neill, C. (2020). The impact of chronic kidney disease on developed countries from a health economics perspective: A systematic scoping review. PLOS ONE, 15(3), e0230512. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0230512

Hueso, M., Haro, L. de, Calabia, J., Dal-Ré, R., Tebé, C., Gibert, K., Cruzado, J. M., & Vellido, A. (2020). Leveraging data science for personalized hemodialysis. Kidney Diseases, 6(6), 385–394. https://doi.org/10.1159/000507291

McGonigle, D., & Mastrian, K. G. (2018). Nursing informatics and the foundation of knowledge (4th ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Poyah, P. S., & Quraishi, T. A. (2020). The impact of a new triage and booking system on renal clinic wait times. Canadian Journal of Kidney Health and Disease, 7. https://doi.org/10.1177/2054358120924140

Vadakedath, S., & Kandi, V. (2017). Dialysis: A review of the mechanisms underlying complications in the management of chronic renal failure. Cureus, 9(8). https://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.1603

Vandenberg, A. E., Jaar, B. G., James, K. P., Lea, J., O’Donnell, C., Masud, T., Mutell, R., & Plantinga, L. C. (2021). Making sense of DialysisConnect: A qualitative analysis of stakeholder viewpoints on a web-based information exchange platform to improve care transitions between dialysis clinics and hospitals. BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, 21(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12911-021-01415-y

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