Use of Handheld Devices for Nurses

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Handheld Devices for Nurses Technology is by far one of the greatest tools in the medical field. Considering that even just a decade ago nurses and doctors used paper charts for patients, the medical field has come a long way. One tool that nurses can now utilize for greater patient assistance and education is a handheld device. Handheld devices such as a PDA with scanner can give nurses the freedom to verify charts and medical journal articles in record time and present patients with the most accurate and pertinent information. This paper will explore the many uses for PDA's in the nursing field, security protocols, and privacy implications. Whereas PDA's were once the norm in only the business world, modern PDA's have technology that is invaluable to nurses. For instance, bar code scanning technology can be used by hospitals to ensure that a patient's information is accessed directly from their hospital band, preventing chart errors and ensuring optimal patient safety. This same technology is also used for verifying medications and proper dosing both on patient bands and medication bottles (Carayon, 2007). Additionally, a PDA can connect directly to the internet, allowing nurses to access medical journals and other research information and print instantly, providing patients with the necessary information to make proper decisions for themselves. Another study utilized a radio frequency technology in a PDA to detect and account for surgical gauze sponges, preventing the
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