Background/purpose: Meaningful use spurred healthcare systems to transition to using electronic health record (EHR) systems as a standard technology to capture vital data. Nurses use EHR systems as an essential part of their work as they monitor patients, document, communicate, and support direct patient care. To ensure all nurses can fully engage with this and other technology tools, the AACN developed revised competency expectations of nursing graduates at all levels. But a gap exists. Many schools of nursing lack the resources and faculty competency to fully use an EHR as part of education to meet the expected competencies. Identifying needs from a faculty perspective and providing evidence-based recommendations and guidance for EHR use and education could improve implementation of this needed technology and the competency to use the technology to its full potential.
Description: To determine self identified faculty competency gaps, a survey was developed as part of a needs assessment related to the use of an academic EHR during teaching at a large academic school of nursing. The survey assessed the faculty's awareness of the current system, perceptions of potential use to achieve competencies, and opinions of needed features. The anonymous survey was administered to nursing school undergraduate and graduate faculty within an academic medical center school of nursing.
Evaluation: Findings indicate that faculty believe that there is a benefit to incorporating an academic EHR system into teaching to increase competence of the students and deeper use of the EHR data and information. Deficits in how to incorporate an academic EHR into practice were noted among faculty. Detailed data will be available at time of the conference. Data is awaiting review and approval internally.
Conclusion: Increasing the use of technology within nursing education is a priority. Nursing faculty recognize that academic EHRs can be used to teach nursing informatics competencies. Not all faculty feel that they have the support and knowledge needed to execute this teaching strategy. Support should be offered to faculty when an academic EHR is in place to optimize the potential of the learning system.