NHS Digital’s chief nurse Anne Cooper has called for the profession to get behind the introduction of information standards in nursing.
Cooper told Digital Health News that she has issued a ‘rallying cry’ for nurses to share the same electronic language.
She added: “Technology is becoming more and more important but the nursing profession does not have a shared electronic language.
“This is quite important.”
“If we are going to be able to move information around the system then you have to have a shared language.”
“This is the time to do it, this is our time.”
Cooper also added that having a shared understanding of nursing terminology would increase safety and efficiency.
On her blog, Cooper stresses standards are needed for “how we record a patient’s weight across systems, as it could be used to calculate a dose of a medication.”
“We need to ensure we consistently record nursing observations such as pressure ulcers, so we can measure improvement and compare across systems/organisations.”
She explained it sets a universal language across the organisation. “We need to ensure we express care requirements in a standard way so that when we communicate across organisational boundaries we don’t lose meaning.”
Cooper said the need for national nursing information standards across the professional practice will “enable us to measure nursing outcomes, compare performance, share information and, for the future, provide data that will support accurate AI.”
While bodies such the Professional Record Standards Body (PSRB) could help set up such standards, Cooper says nurses themselves also have to get on board with the concept.
In August, NHS Digital endorsed a national campaign to encourage digital training for nurses.
The Royal College of Nursing’s (RCN) “Every nurse an e-nurse” wants every UK nurse to be an e-nurse by 2020.