Technologies to Improve Nurse to Patient Communication

Nurses are constantly looking for ways to improve patient care. How a nurse provides and receives communication with patients is crucial to improved productivity in caring for the sick. According to a report by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, communication errors account for the majority of medical errors in the health-care industry. New technologies such as high-tech communication tools, clinical decision support and educational simulation are improving the accuracy of nurse to patient communication.

Information and Communcation Technology

According to a study performed by the Swedish health care system, information and communication technology (ICT) is complementary and beneficial to the nursing industry. Study results showed ICT used in home care reduced nurses' travel time, allowed nurses to communicate more effectively with patients and provided caregivers with an increased sense of professionalism. High-tech communication tools provide nurses with detailed patient health care information.

Clinical Decision Support

Nurses have long used bedside monitoring devices such as blood pressure cuffs, oxygenation devices and cardiac monitors to assess changes in a patient's condition. The use of so many technologies can result in information overload as nurses collect and interpret a mass of information to care for a patient. Bedside surveillance technology such as clinical decision support can reduce the amount of information a nurse must analyze and interpret. The support system provides facts and treatment strategies for specific conditions and diseases, including updated medical knowledge and recent clinical research.

Simulation

Medical simulation of acute and chronic care situations have led health-care experts to acknowledge the benefit of such projects in patient care outcomes. By teaching nursing students how to respond in critical care situations with props, such as computerized patient dolls that present uncommon conditions, nurses can experiment with new technologies and improve patient communication strategies.