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Nursing software is specifically designed for healthcare providers to manage large volumes of patient data, such as admissions and discharges, patient medical records and billing information. Due to the scale and varied nature of patient data, nursing software typically comes in several forms to address different areas:

A clinician using nursing software to review a patient's medical data.
Nursing software is designed to manage large volumes of patient data.
  • Drug Guide Software: This software type allows clinical staff to check a patient’s medication and its suitability. It determines the possible side effects, interactions with other drugs, dosing information, and specifics about how the drug works.  
  • Referencing Software: Clinical staff uses nursing software daily as a reference tool because its built-in capabilities can perform several tasks, such as displaying overviews of diagnostic tests, diseases, and illnesses and translating notes so staff can communicate effectively with patients whose first language is not English. 
  • Database Software: Healthcare providers like long term care facilities rely on competent nursing software systems so staff can access resident information without disrupting workflow. Most modern-day nursing software systems are cloud-based, allowing staff to move between residents and attend to their needs while accessing the necessary information via the nursing home software.
  • Tracking and Point of Care (PoC) Software: An essential responsibility for clinicians like nurses and CNAs is tracking residents’ care progress through their body mass index, wound data, and laboratory history. Each resident has unique medical information stored in the facility’s long term care EHR system, which is accessible via portable handheld devices. This allows clinicians to access, update, and track multiple residents, ensuring each resident receives the correct treatment and care. 

Is Nursing Software Essential?

Nursing software systems have become an indispensable daily tool, as the facilities that utilize them have seen noticeable improvements in workflow efficiency, resident care, and data accuracy. Perhaps even more impressive, this technology is revolutionizing the industry by mitigating the staffing crisis with innovative solutions that make long term care more appealing to new and existing staff members. 

Further, clinicians have considerably fewer administrative duties thanks to the robust automated processes requiring less time and less manual labor. This gives them more time to spend with residents and provide better care in person rather than behind a computer screen.  

Pros and Cons of Point of Care Documentation

As mentioned above, point of care software is used by clinicians to track and update resident information. Point of care documentation is the recommended practice in healthcare facilities, as it allows resident data to be entered at the point of care, or, while beside the resident. That eliminates the need to rely upon memory, thus improving data accuracy. 

Other advantages of entering point of care documentation via the facility’s nursing software include:

  • Cleaner and more organized notes, as opposed to messy, handwritten notes
  • Immediate access to resident data, as all data is stored in the facility’s cloud-based system
  • Accessible resident data to multiple caregivers, ensuring workflow efficiency across the facility
  • Improved communication between multiple departments, as caregivers can share and retrieve medical information via multiple devices 
  • Improved billing assessments and accuracy, reducing billing holdups or incorrect billing calculations

Challenges to Point of Care Documentation 

Despite the many advantages of point of care documentation, not all PoC documentation systems are well-conceptualized. A lack of intuitive design results in a clunky system that is difficult to navigate, cybersecurity risks, health anxiety, and ineffective tools that do not capture the necessary patient details, resulting in medical and billing errors. 

A nurse entering point of care documentation while sitting beside a resident during her rounds.
Point of care documentation allows caregivers to enter data besides a patient.

Another problematic issue with some PoC documentation is that it distracts nurses’ and other clinicians’ attention away from the patient, thus compromising the nurse-patient interaction. Rather than interacting with a patient, a nurse is instead navigating an inefficient software system, looking for information, or spending too much time trying to update the resident’s medical information. Not only does this affect workflow, but it also impacts work satisfaction and motivation

Accessibility is also a concern with outdated point of care systems. Suppose a facility has not effectively implemented the software system to include accessible workstations, nursing kiosks, or portable handheld devices. In that case, caregivers cannot maximize the usability of the software programs, rendering the software ineffective. 

All of this is to say that it is imperative for healthcare providers to conduct extensive research into the various long term care software vendors, what tools and features they offer, how the software can meet the facility’s needs, and what support the vendor provides for training and customer services before investing in a new nursing software system. 

Contact us here to see how our intuitive, state-of-the-art nursing software can improve your facility’s workflow and processes. 

4 Key Features of eMAR Software  

We know that the world of eMAR software systems and nursing software can be a minefield, especially for those who are not tech-savvy. However, the healthcare industry is changing rapidly, with complete digitization mere decades away. Therefore, now more than ever is the time to get clued up on nursing software and healthcare informatics. 

Of course, investing in a new eMAR software system is not a decision to be taken lightly. Choosing the right eMAR software system will result in delivering accurate results with minimal errors, as clinicians can more easily document vital signs and other observations. Failing to do your research, though, may get you stuck paying for expensive software that your staff does not really use. 

Below are four key eMAR and point of care documentation features that long term care facilities should look for when assessing different nursing home software systems:

  1. Alerts

Clinicians are notoriously busy juggling patient concerns, medications, and treatments. That’s why any point of care system needs to have a helpful alert feature that notifies staff with warnings and pop-up alerts, keeping all caregivers alerted of important information. This allows caregivers to communicate effectively with each other, even during shift changes, so that no critical information is missed and better care is given to the residents. 

  1. Advanced Reporting

Paper documentation created problems managing resident reports and data entries. But with today’s eMAR software and point of care documentation, clinicians can prepare reports quicker and easier because of advanced reporting tools, like CareMetrics, which collects, formats, and analyzes actionable data. So when assessing different long term care software, it is essential to check what built-in reporting tools are available and whether they can meet the facility’s needs. 

  1. Digital Notes

One of the most helpful features of nursing software is the capacity to store electronic medical records in the cloud. This allows clinicians to access crucial medical data whenever it is needed. Access to digital notes is considerably more efficient than paper form, as clinicians do not need to sift through piles of paperwork. Instead, they can flip through the full medical history of a resident and asses changes in conditions and new treatments. 

  1. Audits

As mentioned earlier, long term care facilities must collect and manage vast amounts of patient data, which can be daunting. However, using eMAR software and point of care documentation, the process of compiling data is now automated to integrate real-time data into a comprehensive report, saving staff time and stress. 

Embracing Nursing Software

A clinician using the facility's eMAR software to assess a resident's data.
eMAR software delivers accurate results with minimal errors.

Modern-day technology is shaping the world of healthcare as we know it. The increasing use of cloud computing, EHRs, eMARs, tablets, ePrescribing, and eDocuments, allows clinicians more flexibility to practice medicine from anywhere, anytime, and from any device. By embracing new technology like nursing software, facilities can create a more positive working environment that improves schedules to combat staff burnout and fatigue, thus improving patient care and safety.  

Additionally, the automated processes that nursing software brings provide a long-term solution to the staffing crisis, as workflow efficiency can be redesigned and enhanced with more practical solutions to time-consuming administrative duties. 

For more on recent trends in long term care, read our blog and subscribe to the LTC Heroes podcast

Cindy Wong
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