Nursing EHR: features, integrations & adoption guide

Nursing EHR: features, integrations & adoption guide

February 22, 2023

Electronic health records for nurses contain structured information about patient health conditions, medical procedures, prescribed medications, and other essential health actions from the nursing staff.

Today nurses’ workload is heavier than ever, so they need a new tool to maximize their efficiency while lowering the risk of burnout. Implementing specialized EHRs helps nurses access vital patient data quickly to make better clinical decisions, ensure patient safety, and enhance health outcomes.

Nursing EHR market stats

of citizens aged 65+ will need long-term care at some point

Zippia, 2022

of nursing facilities reported using an EHR

JAMDA, 2020

of nurses report high levels of EHR satisfaction

KLAS, 2019

Main features of nursing EHR

The feature set of EHR software for nursing care facilities slightly differs from that of general practitioners because most patients have chronic conditions that have to be monitored by medical personnel over long periods.

Documentation management
  • Complete patient profiling
  • Vital signs documentation
  • eForm library
  • Printable templates
  • Point of care notes and medical records
  • Nursing documentation
  • Comprehensive clinical dashboards
  • Patient condition analytics and reporting
  • Treatment effectiveness and risk assessment
  • Point of care medication administration record
  • Order management
  • Adverse reactions logging and alerts
  • Possible drug interaction alerts
  • e-Prescriptions
  • Task trackers and reminders
  • Progress notes sharing and interdepartmental communication
  • Unified terminology database
  • Multi-factor authorization
  • Data encryption
  • Distributed access control
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Backup reminders
  • Voice recognition
  • Chatbots and voice assistants
  • Point of access for patients
  • RPM device integration

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Nursing EHR integrations

Integrating an EHR for nurses with your organization’s software or third-party applications enables safer and faster data transfer, optimizes workflows, and improves patient outcomes.

How to choose nursing EHR software

Our experts recommend considering the following aspects when choosing EHR software for nurses.

Deployment model

On-premise systems are more customizable and secure and work well in areas with poor internet connection. They, however, cannot be accessed from outside the facility, are trickier to back up, and not as interoperable as cloud-based solutions. The latter are more flexible, can be accessed from anywhere in the world, and their maintenance and backups are the vendor's responsibility. Their drawbacks include obligatory good internet connection and the introduction of strict data government policy at the facility.

Security and compliance

In order to receive the Meaningful Use reimbursement and protect patient data, opt for systems that are developed according to privacy and security regulations, standards, and protocols for health information technology: HIPAA, GDPR, OWASP, FHIR, FDA, etc.

Features and integrations

Make sure the EHR or EMR of your choice covers your organization’s requirements. For this, consult with clinicians and nurse practitioners to learn their EHR expectations and needs. Yet, do not pick “the more the better” approach, as an overly feature-rich system will cost you a lot more and pose a greater risk of burnout to the staff.

Flexibility and scalability

The amount of patient data grows exponentially every year, new technologies are being developed and adopted in health IT, and government regulations are updated accordingly. Check with your vendor to make sure they regularly update and expand their EHR system.

Reliability

Major workflow disruptions due to system downtime and the disappearance of patient information remain one of the top concerns for nurses. Make sure that your EHR solution has backup options, is sufficiently supported by the vendor, and its capabilities fit your recovery time objective.

Nursing EHR implementation roadmap

Our experienced team takes on EHR implementation projects of any complexity, offering consultation, development, data migration, system modernization, and support services.

1

Discovery

We work closely with nursing staff and management to discover EHR requirements and define its tech stack.

2

Development

We map out the project, set its timeline, and develop a solution compliant with industry standards and privacy regulations.

We integrate the EHR with your other healthcare software or third-party applications.

We conduct quality assurance and test runs throughout the development process.

3

Deployment

We integrate the nursing EHR into the facility’s IT ecosystem and migrate relevant data.

4

Post-deployment

We provide software performance monitoring, improvements, updates, and  different levels of support during the use of EHR.

Top nursing EHR solutions

MatrixCare

    MatrixCare solutions showed an 88.3% satisfaction rate among users, according to the 2021 KLAS Performance Report. The company offers a variety of solutions for all types of care organizations: nursing homes, hospices, hospitals, and home care professionals.

    Charting is done electronically as care is given, so staff can spend more time with patients providing the care they need and deserve [thanks to the MaxtrixCare solution].

    Julie Chartreau

    IS Director, Bradford Ecumenical Home

    Benefits of EHR in nursing practice

    While valuable to nurses in the first place, EHR also brings advantages to care providers, patients, and long-term care organizations.

    Chart title: Positive changes in nursing teams after EHR implementation
    Data source: ScienceDirect

    Increased efficiency

    Most nursing homes and hospitals have seen the impact of electronic health records starting with increased efficiency. Nurses can spend less time on sifting through documentation during their shifts and have more time and energy left for patient-related tasks and training. Additionally, as EHRs facilitate information exchange, their adoption can improve care coordination between departments.

    Improved quality of care

    Electronic health records provide nursing home staff with timely and accurate patient information, which allows for more accurate decision making and personalized care delivery. Document management automation also enables nurses to spend more time tending to patients’ needs, while EHRs’ analytical capabilities help predict possible condition changes and make more data-based clinical decisions.

    Resource optimization

    EHR implementation in nursing homes and long-term care facilities helps identify and eliminate inefficient procedures for patients, like excessive lab tests or medical imaging, and better distribute facilities’ spaces, like grouping beds according to patients’ conditions.

    Reduced errors

    Medical errors can have devastating repercussions for post-acute care facilities: damaged reputation, thousands of dollars in lawsuit losses, or even a revoked license. According to two nationwide studies, 37% of nurses believe that EHRs help to prevent medication errors. Additionally, this type of nursing home software eliminates duplicates in documentation and enhances the accuracy of input information.

    Drawbacks of nursing EHR and how to overcome them

    Despite the proven benefits of electronic health records, some nurses are still reluctant to use them. Let’s take a look at the most significant challenges of EHR implementation and how to solve them.

    Challenge

    Possible solution

    Challenge

    User burnout due to cognitive overload

    Challenge

    Possible solution

    Nurses reported significantly reduced burnout levels after optimizing the data entry interface. Therefore, the EHR system should be tuned to the specific healthcare environment to avoid overburdening nurses with information they don’t need.

    Challenge

    Gaps in care during system downtime

    Challenge

    Possible solution

    Any medical organization reliant on EHRs and other healthcare software needs an actionable emergency strategy in case of system downtime (e.g., during a blackout or lost internet connection). It may include backups, remote access from mobile devices, and sufficient personnel emergency training.

    Challenge

    Lack of required functionality

    Challenge

    Possible solution

    Nurses’ opinions should be taken into account during the earliest stages of EHR adoption. It’s essential to implement the system functionally most aligned with the facility’s operations. Most EHRs for nurses can be further tuned and modified to more specific requirements by experienced developers.

    Empower nurses with EHR software

    Empower nurses with EHR software

    More than 90% of nurses reported burnout after the COVID pandemic, which led to nationwide nursing personnel shortages. Still, healthcare organizations of all specialties and sizes cannot afford to lose their nurses due to overload with administrative tasks, stress over incoherent patient information, and frustration with unoptimized workflows. Our team is ready to help hospitals and long-term care facilities implement EHR solutions to boost their nurses’ productivity and well-being through the automation of routine document management tasks, patient management facilitation, and data-sharing across organizations. Whether you need help to choose and implement a new system, modernize legacy software, or migrate patient data from one system to another – don’t hesitate to contact us.

    Empower nurses with EHR software

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    Nursing EHR FAQ

    We gathered questions most healthcare providers ask at the beginning of their EHR implementation journey.

    Why do we need different EHR for doctors and nurses?

    What is the cost of nursing EHR?

    Why is it difficult for nurses to use EHR?