In this decade, indeed a couple of years; say 2022, the global shortage of nurses will be an issue–even more likely post pandemic as nurses may decide risking one’s life every shift is not their destiny. We know a number of transformations have occurred in this calendar year, who knew so much work could be done remotely, who knew ZOOM existed, who knew that policies could be written and discarded so quickly. The previous blog entry provided an introduction into AI and this entry will touch on the challenges, opportunities and the value of compassion. The future of Registered Nurses as a viable profession will need to evolve and we need to acquire clarity on how to deliver effectively, consistently and competently as a team based group. Right now we seem to be the information integrators and AI may be the tool that helps gather “big” data to be examined and using algorithms quickly and efficiently integrate and alert the health care team.
Certainly there are themes we can readily identify in patient care, the needed change of doing with patients and families not do to them. With immediately sets the tone for the values compassion, respect, honesty, empathy etc. to be displayed. Listening to nurses there are a couple of areas to work on, workload and how will leaders inspire their team to adopt the attitudes needed to deliver with the patient along with family the outcomes of excellence, safety, and quality care. Certainly the characteristics of a nurse coach will need to be enhanced, did you know at least 20% of nursing work is non-nursing tasks? That’s close to 1.5 hours in an 8 hour shift, add on breaks of 60 minutes, on hold for calls, waiting for calls, and before a nurse starts her/his first assessment they have approx. 3 hours less for nursing.
Time is money and we know there are costs for the hardware, software, and the team that builds, maintains, and replaces the AI systems. We all know of systems installed, education to use it–that alarm silence, use this appropriate germicidal solution.
Really happened New glucometers were sent to the medicine unit with the vendor and the hospital technologist in charge of point of care testing. Glucometer demo begins, one of the staff nurses asks “how do we clean it between patients?” The vendor replied “don’t use a bleach-based solution the screen will be scratched” well that’s what we had. Vendor recommended a special cleaner for electronic devices. Next question from me; “is it a germicidal product?” There was a long pause, which then opened the opportunity that using more than one product for cleaning was a big ask in a busy unit with many points of time used to clean equipment electronic or not. The product was not purchased and I’m sure the vendor learned a lot from our facility.
We also know of equipment launched and then moved to a corner and never used again. This raises the question what are we trying to solve by increasing AI in the clinical areas? We are trying to standardize delivery of care, we need to combine multiple facilities’ data to increase Canadian content i.e. diversity, complexity, cultural factors. There needs to be careful thought of data inaccuracies from systemic racism, as algorithms built from white males who are less than 30 years of age does not reflect any community I know of; to eliminate it requires bias be recognized. Our future needs more equity and equality to fully deliver a winning combination of health care interventions, coaching, what the heck, and advocacy!
The nursing profession will evolve and I am excited for our young colleagues, who may interact with an AI personality; who will be as much a team member as the other professionals and support staff in health care. Namaste.
” Compassion automatically invites you to relate with people because you no longer regard people as a drain on your energy.”Chogyam Trungpa
Registered Nurse Storyteller, Healer, Scribe, Transformational Leader