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Nurse Researchers Improve Patient Care and Outcomes

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, April 8th, 2014

“With the increase in the need for technology to help patients and their families become more engaged in health care decision making, nurses are leading the charge to create technologies that respond to this needs of patients and their families,” said Ronald L. Hickman, Jr., PhD, RN, ACNP-BC, assistant professor at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, Case Western Reserve University, and acute care nurse practitioner at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, both in Cleveland, Ohio.

Hickman has conducted federally funded clinical research to develop technology to promote patient engagement in health care decisions. He and his colleagues created an avatar-based simulation system that helps patients manage their high blood pressure and symptoms of depression. He is now working on developing a software application that caregivers can use to help them be proactive in making healthcare decisions for loved ones unable to make those decisions.

Here’s how it will work: Patients will interact with the chronic disease management program, which simulates a physician office visit. They practice using SBAR (Situation-Background-Assessment-Recommendation) communication techniques as they interact with digital characters.

“It’s like a practice run of going to our doctor’s visit,” Hickman said. His research has shown that “this type of training converts to real-life outcomes.”

Nurses are on the cutting edge of research to improve patient care and outcomes.

To learn how to retain nurses and how to recruit nurses to do this work, visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. CONTACT ME with any questions about bringing this program to your staff.

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