The other day I was at school, managing a to-do list that seemed longer than it had been a while. Between emails that needed to go out, chapters that needed to be read, and general life that needed to be organized, I thought about what I would be doing if I didn’t have by laptop, my blackberry, and my ipod (for listening to lectures, of course!).Â Even as I’m writing this, I am on my laptop at a coffee shop, sending out an email and making sure I have all my class notes in order to study for my final.Â It got me thinking that even though these pieces of technology play such a huge role in our lives, there are still places where we could integrate their use to streamline the way we learn, and the way we care for our patients.
So I searched “nursing” on iTunes, just out of curiosity, and aside from the super awesome things I knew about (TheNursingShow podcast) and the iPod apps that made me want to get a new phone, I came across something WAY COOL.Â An iPod app created by a nursing school, for nursing school. From what I gathered – or the way I see this all working out – is that each student is given a smart phone (in this case an iPhone/iTouch – ok, maybe they aren’t given it, but each student has one), and it’s loaded with apps and programs that are to be utilized throughout the nursing school experience. WHAT?! That’s so awesome! The one app in particular that I was looking at was like a “clinical companion” for the student. All HIPPA safe, the student can input data about the patientÂ (patient prep info!) and then throughout the day, the student checks off assessment findings associated with the diagnosis, meds given, and nursing activities completed. It’s an electronic way of keeping track of what’s been done, and what was found. At the end of the day, the students can sync their phones/devices into the main system, and the instructor can see what was completed, found, etc.
BRILLIANT! I’m sold! I asked one of my tech savvy instructors if she had heard of this, and she said some schools are using PDAs as a mandatory part of their program. It’s not something that my school will be considering in the next 9 months so that I can see it, but it’s definitely an option for the future of nursing schools. With everything that is becoming available, apps, books (even textbooks are going digital) why not uniformly utilize technology for the benefit of our education, and our learning experiences? I vote YES for PDA supplemented nursing programs in our future – what do you think?