I started my career many years ago in a mid-sized community hospital in the tri-state area of IN, IL, and KY, in the acute behavioral health field. I was fortunate to work at a great hospital with strong nursing and physician leadership that taught me as a new graduate nurse the value of quality patient care and doing everything with the patient and family in mind. Many mentors helped to guide my approach to nursing care, and what type of nurse and eventual leader I would be. Many of these mentors I still think of and reach out to for advice today.
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Michele Behme, RN
May 6-12 marks National Nurses Week 2019, a week that recognizes the vast contributions and positive impact of America’s four million registered nurses (RN). We want to bring attention to the nurses who have used their degree and skills to pursue careers beyond the patient bedside for the betterment of patients, families, and the communities where they work. According to the American Nurses Association, National Nurses Week is celebrated annually from May 6, also known as National Nurses Day, through May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. This week is a time for everyone – individuals, employers, other health care professionals, community leaders, and nurses – to recognize the vast contributions and positive impact of America’s registered nurses.
Rural acute care and critical access hospitals face similar obstacles as their larger healthcare counterparts, but they also face unique challenges. Impediments range from aligning services to their communities’ needs and trying to stay independent amid heavy merger and acquisition activity to addressing value-based care and creating more efficient processes that optimize resources, lower costs, and support patient safety and quality of care goals. Most hospitals use some form of EHR technology to improve clinical efficiency, but dissatisfaction with current EHRs are leading many healthcare organizations to consider EMR/EHR replacement. Providers will often seek third-party consulting partners to collaborate with the EHR vendor and key stakeholders to conduct a rapid, efficient and streamlined implementation.
The annual nurses appreciation week is underway and we’re celebrating all nurses but with a special appreciation for nursing informatics and the critical role it plays in the post-EHR implementation era. While the last decade saw providers bringing their computerized physician order entry (CPOE) and electronic health record (EHR) systems live to meet mandates or incentives, the first wave of EHR implementation is now complete for the majority of large healthcare IDNs. Provider needs are now shifting from training and optimization to interoperability, data analytics, and demonstrating value. As a result, nurses with informatics training and expertise are in higher demand.
What a week it was at the HIMSS18 Annual Conference & Exhibition! If you haven’t been to a healthcare conference in Vegas, then you don’t know what you’re missing. More than 40,000 healthcare professionals from around the globe – physicians, nurses, caregivers, technology professionals, executives, and vendors – converged on the Sands Expo and Convention Center for a week of networking, education, and sharing perspectives on the trends, initiatives, and advances that are shaping health information technology and how care is delivered and received. There was so much going on, the energy was palatable, and it’s impossible to look back and not feel like there was something we didn’t get to see while at this year’s HIMSS conference.