Informatics’ Changing Landscape

By: Denise Hammel

Are you ready?

On December 2, 2014, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) released the revised Standards and Scope of Practice for Nursing Informatics. These revised standards come at a pivotal point when organizations are examining their informatics department:

  • Do we have the right people to implement advanced EHR concepts?
  • Do we have the right people to evaluate technology in non-acute settings?
  • Do we have the right people to examine available data and turn it into something actionable in order to improve outcomes?
  • Do we have the right people to prepare the organization for changing models of care and payment structures?

The composition and skill mix of current resources need careful evaluation to determine if they have the capacity to meet the current and anticipated demands of their organization.

XcellenceFirstThe hallmark of the ANCC Standard has always remained focused on Quality and Safety being paramount to the informatics professional, and that critical aspect is unchanged. While some of the Standards have not changed, there is now greater emphasis on the measurement aspects of informatics practice. For many Informatics professionals, this may mean attaining new skills to build these competencies.

In the 2014 edition, the definition of a Nursing Informatics professional has been expanded to include language that suggests the NI professional is inclusive of other disciplines. This means that Nursing Informatics, more than any other informatics discipline, can address the needs across all disciplines.

Other changes to the definition suggest a greater role in identifying and defining opportunities within their organization. This creates more emphasis on the leadership aspects of this role and less emphasis on implementation of a plan provided to them.

It’s important to note that there is a self-determination aspect of the Standards, meaning that organization have latitude to actualize these guidelines in their organization in a manner that compliments their needs. Given the fluidity of the Healthcare Information Technology environment and the change scope of Informatics practice, many organizations will need assistance translating guidelines into practice.

XcellenceFirst will have more to publish on this topic. Stay tuned…

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