This year, National Nurse’s Week has me reflecting on my career and, I’ll be honest, had a little doubt creeping into my consciousness – is this still my week to celebrate?
The traditional image of the nurse we celebrate is the dedicated, hardworking, never stopping, no-time-to-pee, on the frontline clinician. Or perhaps the nurse leader, the nurse educator – someone who is immersed in and around fellow or soon-to-be clinicians.
The nurse in IT is a varied breed – from nurse informaticists in a healthcare organization, to someone like myself, a nurse in a software company. Some informaticists do double duty, taking part in direct patient care as well as serving as the clinical voice in technology.
Others may have a focused path that is dedicated to informatics alone. Still others have come to nursing informatics from the technical side and have gained clinical knowledge by becoming a nurse following a career in IT.
But then, I remembered what I always say about why I love nursing – the options are endless! ICU, peds, oncology, home health… even informatics. How wonderful that we can practice nursing in so many different ways.
And there it was, my answer. Yes, this is still my week!
The reason? A nurse in IT has the same overarching goal and passion as the nurse at the bedside: to care for patients. Whether in a hospital, clinic, school, in the community or an office, our nursing decisions and nursing practice continue to influence patient outcomes. I am not at the bedside, but my nursing knowledge and 26 years’ experience inform decisions FormFast makes about our solutions – decisions that improve what we offer to help take better care of patients.
So, I salute and sincerely thank ALL nurses. No matter where and how you practice today, your knowledge, experience, and your compassion are an integral part of your role – at the bedside and at the keyboard.
Join FormFast in celebrating the nurses of our nation, who are at the forefront of improving patient care and transforming healthcare.
Robin McKee, MS, RN, is the Director of Clinical Informatics Solutions at FormFast. She brings over twenty years of clinical experience as a registered nurse in hospital, outpatient, and community health settings. She earned her BSN from University of Missouri and MS in Healthcare Informatics from the University of Colorado. McKee began her health IT career as an Epic trainer for SSM Health Care. As a certified analyst, she optimized workflows at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital, and helped prepare BJC HealthCare for their transition to Epic.