Consulting for nursing informatics

Consulting For Nursing Informatics Consulting for nursing informatics is a function of a consultant, who provides expert advice professionally. This definition when applied to ‘ nursing informatics implies an informatics expert as applied to nursing profession or vice versa. The nursing profession in turn is a discipline of care for the sick, and is part of the larger multidisciplinary field, the healthcare, which is dependent upon input from medical, dentistry, pharmacy, social sciences, information, communication, information technology fields, besides other areas. Information and communication are fundamental needs of any organization for decision taking and overall functioning. In current times the traditional manual handling of information has been replaced by automated handling of information collection, collation, distribution using computers and information technology tools giving rise to the discipline of informatics, which applied to healthcare is health informatics. Health informatics integrates several fields like Informatics, Nursing, Medical, Dental, Pharmaceutical, and Social and Consumer health, each being a specialty with overlap in some roles and tasks, but with single objective of providing improved healthcare. There are several categories of trained personnel as applied to functions and tasks of nurses in health informatics: ‘ informatics nurses’ have tasks in healthcare, ‘ nursing informatics’ have tasks in informatics, and ‘ informatics nurse specialists’ have higher knowledge and specialized skills, and have roles in higher functions. Consulting in the area of nursing informatics requires a leadership position, a person who can plan, advice and execute nursing informatics projects under complex situations of overall healthcare informatics. Thus nursing consultant has role in leading, planning, development, integration, maintenance, overall management, besides regular skill up gradation through training, management of systems and resources, and a system which through its performance expresses the value of nurses in the system of healthcare. The consultant in nursing informatics should also cover the tasks of change management, and interface and coordinate with people across organization from nurses to clinical departments across the healthcare system. Besides, consulting should also include coordination with service vendors for IT, identify problems and provide solutions, advise on up gradation of systems, and implement systems consistency with professional standards. As described by Simpson (1998), nurses are well positioned to the role of consulting for nursing informatics due to their important role in healthcare, and their nursing qualities like critical thinking, care, attention for details, accountability. Consulting in nursing informatics is a domain of ‘ informatics nurse specialists’ who possess besides a degree in nursing, postgraduate training in informatics, and considerable experience. Consulting for nursing informatics is possible both as a self-employed person or as an employee of the vendor staying in the campus.
Simpson RL. Making the move from nurse to nursing informatics consultants. (1998). Nurs Manage, 29 (5), 22-25