Supporting Nurses' Information Flow by Integrating Paper and Digital Charting
Information technology has changed the way health care is delivered. Electronic health records which are prevalently deployed to replace or supplement paper documentations have made distributed information access at various points of care and work activity achievable with the use of mobile information devices. Our particular concern is with nurse's information flow, where nurse's notes and observations taken at the point of care feed into the electronic record. In these cases, digital technology has not yet entirely replaced paper and pen, because the latter still provide greater ease and flexibility of use when compared to current digital technologies. Even when mobile digital technology is available, clinicians still prefer creating handwritten notes, and then later manually transposing them into the digital medium. Within this context, we created a prototype that integrated digital paper with electronic health charts to retain the benefits of paper and pen, as well as digital medium. A focus group evaluation of this prototype demonstrated promise and potential for its value in a medical environment.
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