Mobile technology isn’t just for directions or restaurant recommendations; it’s for health care too. Nurses are taking full advantage of the new tech tools—and their patients are benefiting as a result.
Just ask Anna Wroble, RN, a nurse and a mother of four in Nevada who recently won a contest sponsored by Dignity Health, a national hospital chain, for ideas that would improve patient care. Wroble came up with an idea for a mobile application that would enable parents to track their babies’ growth during the first year of their lives. The app—one of three projects that received funding through the contest—became available for free download in August.
“As a neonatal intensive care nurse, I find that parents are often traumatized when their babies are in the NICU,” Wroble said in a blog post. “They don’t know what to expect and tell me they feel as though they have no control when it comes to helping care for their tiny babies. Having four daughters, one of whom spent time in the NICU, I wanted to be able to tell parents what they can do rather than what they can’t—and that we are listening to their needs.”
Nurses are using existing mobile apps, too, to perform better. Scrubs, an online site and print magazine for nurses, recently ran a list of the top 20 clinical apps for nurses in 2012. It includes apps that do everything from helping students study for nursing licensure exams to identifying medications and interpreting electrocardiograms.
“Of course, when you’re in your scrubs and ready to tackle the shift, using mobile apps…is a no-brainer way to better treat your patients and keep reference materials easily accessible,” the Scrubs article states.