How can the use of the nurse’s personal communication device(s) impact patient care positively and/or negatively?
Research performed by Alverina University to determine personal communication devices found that in one colossal hospital corporation situated in the U.S. indicated that about 54 percent of nurses preferred their smartphone to handle clinical duties to any other communication devices (Kenny et al. 2019). Approximately two-thirds of healthcare providers have medical applications on their phones, making them part of their clinical practice. I have to accept that I solely depend on my smartphone to look after my patients in my current practice. I installed the Awhoom pregnancy app on my phone. It is an essential app. I have many patients who previously have complained that they do not receive adequate and effective prenatal care every time they visit the hospital of severe emergencies. Awhoom app helps me quickly determine the approximated time of conception, gestational age, and estimated delivery date.
Moreover, the app also helps me to review many sonograms and ultrasounds, the approximated weight of the fetal, and offering educational contents. With rising technology advancement, mobile healthcare apps are common and widely used by nurses. Using mobile clinic apps can enhance quality treatment, learning, and communication among healthcare providers. The bottleneck of using these apps is that they can cause distraction and interfere with privacy and security when misused.
What are the ethical and legal implications of the use of personal devices?
From this week’s readings, it was noted that nurses who use different forms of social media and social networks need to be cautious. Giving information about one’s practice and confidential data associated with patients’ treatment can be traced and leaked to their family. This can be disastrous as it can tarnish the nurse-patient relationship. We all understand that nursing is among the most trusted fields. According to Hood (2014), involvement in social media or rely on these devices in our daily nursing practices means that we must remain vigilant as part of our professional obligation. Going against patient confidentiality and privacy is a serious problem that can attract legal issues.
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What does the professional literature say about how communication devices can support safe nursing practice?
Henderson and Dahnke (2015) argue that the biggest risk of social media in healthcare facilities is the confidentiality and privacy of the patients. Patients have more trust in nurses than any other healthcare expert. Kenny et al. (2019) hold that breaching this privacy and distracting the confidentiality can destroy the relationship and trust between nurses and patients. So nurses must be careful when using social media and sharing patient data. According to Hood (2014), lack of trust between nurse and patient reduces care quality as many patients may feel insecure about revealing their confidential information that may be necessary for their treatment. The Healthcare information portability and accountability act (HIPPA) dictates that the client’s medical records’ confidentiality must be protected. The privacy of patient’s information must be observed when being shared.
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