Nursing Informatics

What Is Informatics?

Accessible player

Laureate Education (Producer). (2018). What is Informatics? [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze how data collection and access can be used to derive knowledge in a healthcare setting
  • Analyze the role of the nurse leader in using clinical reasoning and judgement in the formation of knowledge
  • Explain the role of the nurse as a knowledge worker
  • Explain concepts of nursing informatics
  • Create infographics related to nursing informatics and the role of the nurse as a knowledge worker

Photo Credit: [IAN HOOTON]/[Science Photo Library]/Getty Images


Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

McGonigle, D., & Mastrian, K. G. (2017). Nursing informatics and the foundation of knowledge (4th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

  • Chapter 1, “Nursing Science and the Foundation of Knowledge” (pp. 7–19)
  • Chapter 2, “Introduction to Information, Information Science, and Information Systems” (pp. 21–33)
  • Chapter 3, “Computer Science and the Foundation of Knowledge Model” (pp. 35–62)

24Slides. (2018). How to make an infographic in PowerPoint. Retrieved September 27, 2018, from https://24slides.com/presentbetter/how-make-infographic-powerpoint/

Nagle, L., Sermeus, W., & Junger, A. (2017). Evolving role of the nursing informatics specialist. In J. Murphy, W. Goossen, & P. Weber (Eds.), Forecasting Competencies for Nurses in the Future of Connected Health (212–221). Clifton, VA: IMIA and IOS Press. Retrieved from https://serval.unil.ch/resource/serval:BIB_4A0FEA56B8CB.P001/REF

Sweeney, J. (2017). Healthcare informatics. Online Journal of Nursing Informatics, 21(1).

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Required Media

Laureate Education (Producer). (2018). Health Informatics and Population Health: Trends in Population Health [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Accessible player

Public Health Informatics Institute. (2017). Public Health Informatics: “translating” knowledge for health [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLUygA8Hpfo.


Discussion: The Application of Data to Problem-Solving

In the modern era, there are few professions that do not to some extent rely on data. Stockbrokers rely on market data to advise clients on financial matters. Meteorologists rely on weather data to forecast weather conditions, while realtors rely on data to advise on the purchase and sale of property. In these and other cases, data not only helps solve problems, but adds to the practitioner’s and the discipline’s body of knowledge.

Of course, the nursing profession also relies heavily on data. The field of nursing informatics aims to make sure nurses have access to the appropriate date to solve healthcare problems, make decisions in the interest of patients, and add to knowledge.

In this Discussion, you will consider a scenario that would benefit from access to data and how such access could facilitate both problem-solving and knowledge formation.

To Prepare:

  • Reflect on the concepts of informatics and knowledge work as presented in the Resources.
  • Consider a hypothetical scenario based on your own healthcare practice or organization that would require or benefit from the access/collection and application of data. Your scenario may involve a patient, staff, or management problem or gap.

By Day 3 of Week 1

Write a description of the focus of your scenario. Describe the data that could be used and how the data might be collected and accessed. What knowledge might be derived from that data? How would a nurse leader use clinical reasoning and judgment in the formation of knowledge from this experience?

The Nurse Leader as Knowledge Worker

The term “knowledge worker” was first coined by management consultant and author Peter Drucker in his book, The Landmarks of Tomorrow (1959). Drucker defined knowledge workers as high-level workers who apply theoretical and analytical knowledge, acquired through formal training, to develop products and services. Does this sound familiar?

Nurses are very much knowledge workers. What has changed since Drucker’s time are the ways that knowledge can be acquired. The volume of data that can now be generated and the tools used to access this data have evolved significantly in recent years and helped healthcare professionals (among many others) to assume the role of knowledge worker in new and powerful ways.

In this Assignment, you will consider the evolving role of the nurse leader and how this evolution has led nurse leaders to assume the role of knowledge worker. You will prepare a presentation with an infographic to educate others on the role of nurse as knowledge worker.

Reference: Drucker, P. (1959). The landmarks of tomorrow. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers.

To Prepare:

  • Review the concepts of informatics as presented in the Resources.
  • Reflect on the role of a nurse leader as a knowledge worker.
  • Consider how knowledge may be informed by data that is collected/accessed.

The Assignment:

  • Explain the concept of a knowledge worker.
  • Define and explain nursing informatics and highlight the role of a nurse leader as a knowledge worker.
  • Develop a simple infographic to help explain these concepts.

    NOTE: For guidance on infographics, including how to create one in PowerPoint, see “How to Make an Infographic in PowerPoint” as presented in the Resources.

  • Present the hypothetical scenario you originally shared in the Discussion Forum. Include your examination of the data that you could use, how the data might be accessed/collected, and what knowledge might be derived from that data. Be sure to incorporate feedback received from your colleagues’ replies.

Submit your completed Presentation.

Submission and Grading Information.

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