Healthcare Information Technology Trends Essay Assignment Paper

Healthcare Information Technology Trends Essay Assignment Paper

Healthcare Information Technology Trends Essay Assignment Paper

Information technology has been transforming health care industry. This dissertation investigates the use of health information technology by health care providers and patients as well as its outcomes. This dissertation consists of three essays studying workflow optimization in hospital emergency departments, people’s search for online health information, and the relationships between EMR (Electronic Medical Records) usage and health care outcomes, respectively.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

Hospital emergency departments’ capacities to deal with a patient surge play an important role in preparedness for natural or man-made disasters. The first essay examines how emergency departments could optimize workflows during extreme events when there is a patient surge. This essay proposes a framework to reconfigure workflows while maintaining treatment quality. Our results show that reorganizing lower-priority processes and relocating the resources associated with those processes can shorten total waiting time in emergency departments, allowing better management of patient flows.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

People are increasingly using the Internet to access health information and the information obtained has an impact on their health care outcomes. The second essay examines the impacts of IT enablers and health motivators on people’s online health information search behaviors. We characterize users’ online health information search behaviors along three dimensions: the frequency of online health information search, the diversity of online health information usage, and the preference of the Internet for initial search. Using the 2003 Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) data on cancers, we find that ease of access to Internet and trust in online health information could affect all three dimensions of search behaviors. While perceived quality of communication with doctors has an impact on diversity of search and preference of search, we surprisingly do not find an impact on the frequency of search for online health information. In addition, our results find that perceived health status could affect both frequency and diversity of search for online health information. But we do not find evidence that perceived health status could lead to a preference for using the Internet as a source for health information.

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The US government has initiated incentive programs to encourage the adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMR). To qualify for the incentive payment, health care providers need to demonstrate “meaningful use” of EMR systems, which requires the use of certified EMRs and the implementation of a set of standard functionalities. In the third essay, we examine how the meaningful use of EMRs would affect health care outcomes in outpatient settings. Our results show that the use of core functionalities required by “meaningful use” criteria and the use of certified EMRs have a positive impact on the quality and efficiency of care. In addition, we find the relationship between the “meaningful use” and quality of care is moderated by the length of EMR use.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

Local Internal Healthcare IT Technology

Local internal healthcare IT technology has been widely accepted by hospitals, physicians and academic institutions. During the initial few years of the new millennium, hospitals used internally developed hospital management systems. However, this rapidly changed over the next few years and various commercially developed systems are either already in place or in the process of being refined. Apart from time saving and cost efficiency, these hospital management systems introduced several other advantages, including better adherence to healthcare guidelines, improved surveillance and a decline in medication errors. These hospital and healthcare management systems targeted areas such as billing, patient appointments, doctor’s availability and maintaining medical records.

The rising popularity of such systems indicates that electronic health records (EHR) will soon become a norm at hospitals. In the future, the EHRs would become more comprehensive. New and improved user interfaces are likely to be created, expediting the implementation of EHRs or Computerized Patient Records (CPR).

Internet-based Healthcare IT

With declining costs and rising assimilation of the Internet into the healthcare sector, data that was being maintained by each hospital individually began to be centralized. For instance, big hospitals like the Johns Hopkins Hospital collect and store information at a centralized location, which could then be accessed by the various branches. The Internet allowed a fast and inexpensive way to access and transmits healthcare information.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

One growing concern that threatened to restrain the surge of electronic health records and the transmission of data over the Internet was data security. A staggering number of data thefts compelled the healthcare industry, which gathers sensitive information, to look towards IT to find ways of protecting patient privacy and confidentiality. One of the best solutions to the need for data security is data encryption. The advancements in healthcare information technology have made data encryption easy to implement and economical. Although significant progress has been made, further advancements in this direction seem to be forthcoming.

An area of growth over the next few years could be the Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) application, which electronically writes physician orders. This technology is currently being used by less than half of the hospitals in the US, which is the hub of healthcare IT development. The use of CPOE in ambulatory clinics is likely to rise in the near future. CPOE has great utility when used in combination with clinical decision support systems (CDSS). CDSS are interactive computer programs that link health observations with information on the subject in order to assist health professionals in their decision making tasks.

Another area of growth for healthcare IT technology would be remote patient monitoring. While hospitals are increasingly implementing remote patient monitoring technologies and the market for the same is growing, individual physicians have not as yet warmed up to the idea. This issue will be overcome when healthcare IT technology is able to link outcomes more closely with remuneration in this sphere.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

The future of healthcare IT technology lies in the effectiveness, expense and safety of information sharing. Healthcare IT and Internet technologies hold great promise in achieving enhanced data sharing among healthcare providers, patients and insurance companies. While countries like the UK, Canada, Australia and France are endeavoring to creating personal health record infrastructures and implementing national health IT, the sharing of information is poised to overcome geographic boundaries in the future. This would be achieved by developments in Internet-based healthcare IT. One impact of this would be the existence of common websites that would maintain medical records of patients. This information may be accessible not only across hospitals, but across hospitals in different countries. These online sites would maintain a person’s medical history, from birth to the vaccinations received, from the surgeries undergone to a record of allergies. A user-friendly interface would help patients, physicians and other healthcare providers to compute and access all the necessary information. So, healthcare IT technology would ensure that individuals are able to access all their healthcare information in one place, so that they have a better understanding of their illness or health situation and use the same platform to communicate with caregivers, without the threat of data theft.

Over the next decade a sea change in healthcare is likely to be spearheaded by developments in IT and communication technologies. Remote monitoring and diagnosis will become more effective and common. This will result in increased transfer of information and communication among hospitals, physicians, clinics and patients as well as remote consultation and education becoming more and more widespread.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

With more and more data being stored, analysis of this data would mark a gigantic leap in the field of preventive health. Analysis could show whether people with certain characteristics or from certain geographies are prone to particular conditions or diseases. Epidemics could also be predicted by the recorded spread of a disease.

Genetic Revolution

Healthcare IT technology will not only transform how medicine is practiced today, but also play a vital role in bringing about a complete paradigm shift. The next groundbreaking feat would be a genetic revolution, or the study of human genome sequencing in preventing, treating and curing diseases.

Genetic engineering would be able to determine a unique DNA signature for each individual, contributing significantly to overall health and well being. Genetic or molecular diagnostics would play a significant role in linking genetic knowledge to medical care. A genetic test or genomic-based diagnostics would be enough to determine what ailments a person is prone to, a person’s physical strengths and vulnerabilities, the status of the current disease, how responsive a patient would be to particular drugs and cures and what specific treatment to follow. Accurate and timely information and the synthesis of this with genetic and medical research would result in the development of novel preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic tests and processes.

Information management would be critical in this sphere of development. Healthcare IT technology would be aimed at integrating laboratories, medical specialists, EHRs and CDSSs. The building of IT infrastructure in the realm of genetics will probably take a very long time to be developed and advancements may take place one small step at a time. This is because genetic engineering is highly complex and DNA sequencing is frightfully expensive. Also, what would really add value in genetic engineering is if data from various sources can be accessed and processed via a common/single interface.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

The first step for healthcare IT technology in combining the various systems would be merging information from various laboratories where genetic tests are performed. Inter-institutional networks or hubs will need to be established in order to exchange information, since no one institute or hospital will be have comprehensive genetic data and knowledge.

This will form the base of developing standards for the industry. But for this, safety of data transfer has to be guaranteed by healthcare IT. The next step would be to link CDSSs to databases, such that decision making can be based on the latest genetic research and knowledge. While genetic knowledge would be shared by various institutes, data and information would span studies and test conducted across diverse organizations and patients would span geographies, the drugs and treatments would be personalized. This means that two people suffering from the same disease may receive different treatment and drugs, depending on their DNA structure.

Information technology would play a vital role in the planning, structuring and implementing needed to transform healthcare into this new era. Healthcare IT technology in the genetics field would have to be colossal in scope and developments in this regard may be slow and take place one step at a time.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

Health Information Technology (Health IT) is a broad term that describes the technology and infrastructure used to record, analyze, and share patient health data. Various technologies include health record systems, including personal, paper, and electronic; personal health tools including smart devices and apps; and finally, communities to share and discuss information. Some of this technology can tell the patient whether they need to go on a diet too, and most of the time the golo diet is what they should be doing or they should be taking Gynexin pill for gynecomastia like most men should be doing.

The purpose of Health IT is to provide better care for patients and help achieve health equity. Health IT supports recording of patient data to improve healthcare delivery and allow for analysis of this information for both healthcare practitioners and ministry of health/government agencies. This data is used for the implementation of policies in order to better treat and prevent the spread of diseases.

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Health IT improves the quality of healthcare delivery, increases patient safety, decreases medical errors, and strengthens the interaction between patients and healthcare providers. In low and middle-income countries (LMIC) the need for reliable and affordable medical record software is paramount. The Open MRS community helps meet this specific need by developing and supporting the Open Medical Record System – an open-source electronic health record (EHR) platform, specifically designed for low-resource environments, and is completely free.

The use of Health IT in medical clinics improves the quality of healthcare that is delivered by providing accurate patient records and allows doctors to better understand the patient’s medical history. Having a comprehensive patient history empowers doctors to more accurately treat ailments and prevent over-prescribing medications which can be fatal. Without medical records, physician’s would need to depend on the patient’s memory, which can lead to inaccurate medical history due to forgetfulness, complex drug names, and ailments affecting the patient’s recollection.

Patients that suffer from disease and ailments directly benefit from Health IT because of the improved level of care. The benefits of electronic health records include: Better health care by improving all aspects of patient care, including safety, effectiveness, patient-contentedness, communication, education, timeliness, efficiency, and equity.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

The Open MRS community brings together software developers, senior medical and health care staff, implementer s and organizers from around the globe with a wide range of skill sets to work collaboratively to develop the software to support health care in these areas. Open MRS’ global community of over 1,200 volunteers from over 60 different countries and is the backbone of the software. Developers from all over the world contribute code to the reference application as well as provide technical support to their local implementing clinics. The Open MRS community brings together software developers from around the globe with a wide range of skill sets to work collaboratively to develop the software to support health care in these areas. In addition, the community has a large pool of senior medical and healthcare staff, who are also informatics, to mentor and guide the design of that software. Lastly, we engage organizations, implementer s and health care team members from those areas that need our software to provide input into the design and the prioritization of features.

Donating to Open MRS ensures that the infrastructure supporting our developers and implementer s worldwide are funded. This infrastructure is the core of the Open MRS global realm where our free software is available for anyone and everyone with the simplest computer or tablet to run in their health clinic. Historically, Open MRS has been used to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and ebola.

Medical information technology is often thought of in the modern context of computers, but the careful collection and analysis of information related to observation of patient condition, effectiveness of different treatments, and design of new treatments dates back to the time of Hippocrates (ca. 460 BC – ca. 370 Be) (Washburn & Hornberger, 2008). Hippocrates took meticulous notes that enabled him to make numerous breakthroughs both in the understanding of the workings of the human body and in the ethics and approach to thinking that are essential to modern medical practice and investigation (Olguin, Gloor & Pentland, 2009). Comparatively little innovation took place in furthering, the practice of medicine from the time of Hippocrates until the early 20th century, with developments such as the smallpox vaccine in 1901.Healthcare Information Technology Trends Paper

During the 20th century, the growth of medical technology has increased continuously, with innovations such as penicillin, X-ray, PET/MRI scanning, computers, robotic surgery, radiation therapy, chemo-therapy, and many other forms of technology and treatments (Garson, 2008; Munnelly & Clarke, 2007). While the use of medical hardware and information technology has been essential to healthcare for thousands of years, these same tools can create difficult problems (Appari & Johnson, 2010; Ziefle & Rocker, 2010). For example, the over-use of antibiotics has caused a new form of pathogen commonly called super-bugs, such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and other antibiotic resistance strains that are extremely difficult and expensive to treat.

Healthcare facilities (buildings) can also be considered to be a form of technology. As with other forms of technology, physical facilities involve a mutual interaction between users of the technology and the technology Anderson & Wittwer, 2011). In healthcare contexts, the physical facilities are often intimately interrelated with the staff and other technology that the building contains (Munnelly & Clarke, 2007). Often, technology is integrated into the building itself. As with other forms of technology in healthcare, organizations spend significant sums of money on their facilities. If these funds are not spent wisely, they contribute to the rising cost of healthcare and can affect the financial or operational viability of the organization (Aziz et al. 2006; Washburn & Hornberger, 2008).

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