Monday, January 6, 2014

Indefinite Temporary Hold

I have always struggled to maintain the ambitions that this site requires in order to sustain as a valuable resource to it's visitors. The breadth and detail requires an army of nursing bloggers with a senior editor who doesn't have the many other hats that I do now. With that being said, I have decided to allow this site to go on hold and probably will let the domain expire. Meanwhile, I have chosen a simple and direct approach over at for those interested in continuing to follow.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

All done. What's next?

Since Spring earlier this year, I devoted much of my available free time to getting school over and done with.  As of last week I paid my last fee and met my last deadline for a masters in nursing education.  Now there is "some" time to focus on getting this up and running again. 

I have been trying to figure out how to best approach a target audience and how to make the content worthwhile. The journal reviews have been beneficial to keep me in touch with "the literature". However, having recently participated in a several professional journal review sessions for a healthcare organization, I have realized that literature does not always equal or translate into evidence based practice. In this information era, some ideas and technology progress too rapidly for journal publication timeframes to keep up. That is not to say that literature should not be depended upon for guiding practice, but I believe that there are those who challenge to push the cutting edge in various health disciplines without the "printed evidence" to guide them into the unknown. 

Future posts while be focusing on current efforts in the clinical informatics along with personal thoughts on how to prepare our next nursing generation to be equipped to handle the many tools they will have at their fingertips. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

SuperUsers in EHR

Situation: "offers guidelines on developing a structured SU group to ensure continued success of your EHR"

Background: Superusers are perhaps the most important element to a successful launch of any new EHR for a facility. Having just gone through a full electronic medical record (EHR) system install at a large university health system in Southern California, I have personally witnessed just how greatly, and how poorly, utilized superusers can be. Their existence is not a new phenomenon as the concept of "on the floor" support has been around for a while. Superusers are typically those who are participate early in the project and are able to gain additional exposure prior to launch. The additional preparation and involvement provides them with the ability to assist with the transition.

Application: This would be helpful for anyone involved with current implementation or optimization of an EHR. The article provides a good approach at utilizing the "superuser" in a simplistic but very effective manner.

Review: Defines the super user with the "primary function of the SU group is to act as a liaison between clinical staff/hospital departments and the IS department for the purpose of making the elec- tronic documentation system as efficient and user- friendly as possible and to improve patient safety and outcomes." Also, the author continues to provide definitions and characteristics of a superuser:
  1. acting as a liaison/resource person between hospital departments and the information systems department,
  2. keeping electronic documentation templates current to meet regulatory standards
  3. identifying current or ongoing electronic documentation system issues/problems,
  4. routinely educating staff on EHR system changes/updates as needed
  5. assisting with testing and auditing of the EHR
A well rounded super user team consist of "tech savvy" employees from various roles ranging from unit clerk to physician. Most importantly, superusers should commit to participate in most meetings for at least two years. This continuity of participation is critical to the progress of the many project a group might undertake. 

Article Referenced

A Super User Group for Your Electronic Health Record! by Simmons, Nagaina MSN, RN
CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing. 31(2):53-56, February 2013.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Relighting the Fire

As a young father and [insert any number of roles here] finding time to maintain a blog developed in the post college pre career times is somewhat limited. The most difficult challenge is finding a way to sustain relevance in today's and tomorrow's web can be in itself a full time job. So, rather than getting stuck on trying stay on the cutting edge, I am reverting back to doing what works best - keeping it simple yet informative.

What made this site unique was the ability to dive into the current literature and provide a summary of topics related to nursing education. As my career and future career path has morphed into the technology sector, so too will future postings. Eventually, I would like to find a way to add the NI (nursing informatics) add on to the website name and will work on doing such. Meanwhile, here we go again....

Friday, November 23, 2012


Life seems to always find a way to force change. Some changes are planned and welcomed while others or adaptations to circumstances.

This past week, a very much welcomed change occurred as my wife and I had our second boy. While enjoying the new addition to the family I have been able to take a step back from the daily work grind and resize what once made this website selfish hobby.

Though I hope to continually refine the detailed topics to an area for each contributing author. Currently, only a few have expressed interest and their works should be posted soon.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Guest Post: Advancing RNeD 80 by 2020

By Lyzanne Mason

TAKE THE PLEDGE to advance your current level of education or visit us on FACEBOOK

Situation: Advancing Nursing Education 80 by 2020. Why support this cause?

Background: Health care is becoming increasingly more complex as patients accessing our health care system have multiple co-morbidities and compounding problems requiring sophisticated care. The 80 by 2020 campaign recommends that graduates from ADN programs further their education and acquire a BSN by 2020. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the Institute of Medicine (IOM) strongly urge the nursing workforce to be prepared at the baccalaureate level as entry to practice to protect the safety of patients and improve health outcomes. Nurses need to join coalition groups to push this agenda forward. Educational standards for nurses must be improved. Support for 80 by 2020 will guarantee that nursing will continue to have a strong voice and lead change in our communities, our hospitals, and our legislative arenas.

About: The RWJF and IOM released The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health in October 2010. This report emphasizes the need to strengthen the nursing workforce through education better equipping future nurses leaders to advance health care reform and improve the state of our current system (RWJF, 2011, p.1). Moreover, several studies have shown that the educational background of nurses is a predictor of patient mortality rates, failure to rescue, and patient falls (Aiken, Clarke, Cheung, Sloane, & Silber, 2003; Kendall-Gallagher, Aiken, Sloane, & Cimotti, 2011). Education does make a difference in the health and longevity of a profession. Data from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in 2008 reveals that 13.3% of nurses hold diplomas, 38.7% are prepared at the associate degree level, 37.6% at the baccalaureate level, 10% at the graduate level, and only 0.4% at the doctoral level (RWJF, 2011, p.1). Susan Hassmiller, RN, PhD, FAAN states that, “We must all stand together as a profession to make health care better—not quibble about whether the ADN and BSN degree is better. Both have value. To address future health care needs, we must accelerate educational progression, using all the tools we have, and we must reach out to other partners in other sectors to achieve this goal” (RWJF, 2011, p.2). Nurses from all educational backgrounds should support this agenda because it will ensure nursing’s longevity and strength in the health care arena for years to come.

Review: You can support the 80 by 2020 campaign by joining an action coalition in your state. Action coalition leaders can be found on the following website:

TAKE THE PLEDGE to advance your current level of education or visit us on FACEBOOK

Lyzanne Mason, RN, BSN, CCRN-CSC is a graduate student in the MSN  Administration program at the University of Texas-Arlington. She works as a Clinical Nurse Educator in the Simulation Lab at the University of Texas Health Science Center School of Nursing . Lyzanne continues to work as a supplemental staff nurse in the Cardiovascular Recovery Room at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Houston, TX.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Article Review: Nurses Leaders and EHR

Strategic Considerations During Electronic Health Record Implementation

As mentioned in earlier posts, last year I left the "floor" and started to work on an EHR implementation project. My current employer is transition from one vendor to another and went through a brisk selection process that was mostly lead by physicians.This article offers a nursing perspective.

Situation: With the latest boom in electronic health record industry, this article provides instruction and advice when choosing an EHR vendor.

Background: The HITECH Act and "meaningful use" standards are driving health care facilities on a "dash for the cash" to receive US federal reimbursement money. When an EHR system is selected, a considerable amount of effort is required to analyze how current operations can be morphed into the future product. Most vendors require a complete overhaul workflow habits and policies and procedures. Depending on the size of the institution, or enterprise, the process can take up to several years to complete. Too often, administrators discover "strategic mistakes" when it is too late.

Abstract: Early decisions during electronic health record (EHR) implementation can determine the long-term success of the EHR within organizations. Questions that should be addressed during EHR implementation are presented with an emphasis on how these questions relate to the success and usability of EHRs.

Review: The following areas are suggested to consider when choosing a system.
  • Modularity - allows for options and fine tuning
  • Compilation and Configuration - provides a perception of future maintenance
  • Installation - outlines the transition process
  • Workflow - current vs future
  • Interoperability - allow for future connectivity
  • Data Access - access patient data
For more details, please refer to the article.

Article written by Stone, Andrew H. MSN, RN; Yoder, Linda H. PhD, MBA, RN, AOCN, FAAN
JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration
Issue: Volume 42(4), April 2012, p 208–214
DOI: 10.1097/NNA.0b013e31824ccdb2