NNU President comes down hard on EHR patient safety risks
The NNU’s recent campaign has been launched to combat the ever-increasing patient safety risks inherent in EHR use and the negative impact that ACA reforms have had in terms of how patients are receiving care. Acting on behalf of various state and local nursing organizations, the NNU has claimed “unchecked proliferation” of the ongoing EHR technology. The NNU and other administration agencies in the sector are worried about the “risk of severe harm” brought in by attempts to significantly reduce hospital admissions and shift in care to more of an outpatient setting.
In a recent press release, the NNU state how clinical decision support tools are often a preemptive strike in individualized care. Rather than relying on the intuition, experience and expertise of a RN, the NNU cautions the public against relying on genetic averages and probabilities. Although EHR and EMR technologies are beneficial in more ways than one, NNU officials want to remind medical professionals that the failure of these systems results in hospitals’ medical teams flying completely blind. In addition to EHR issues, health It can be plagued with technology errors and documentation issues that can put patients in harm’s way.
NNU Co-president Jean Ross, RN, stated that the shift towards ACA standards will compound these problems, and with hospital already reluctant to admit patient due to financial factors, this problem will only worsen over time. Patient already are experiencing heightened emergency room wait times, time in “observation rooms”, and other maneuvers helping hospitals to circumvent CMs penalties and leaving patients exposed to less-than-adequate treatment procedures.
“The American health care system already lags behind other industrialized nations in a wide array of essential health barometers from infant mortality to life expectancy. These changing trends in health care threaten to make it worse,” said Ross. “Behind every statistic is a patient, and their family, who are exposed to unnecessary suffering and risk as a result of the focus on profits rather than what is best for individual patient need.”
In order to address these national concerns and move forward, the NNU is encouraging healthcare professionals to focus on technology investments in terms of better staffing. Supporting the ongoing shortage of doctors and nurses will help to ratify the likelihood of medical errors and will provide better overall service and quality of care to those patients in need.
“What we are advising every patient, every American to do is stand up and be heard,” Ross added. “When it matters most, insist on a registered nurse.”