Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Mobile Apps Empower Nurses to Use Evidence-Based Guidelines, Identify Health Problems

A new nurse-led study concludes that custom mobile health applications can help nurse practitioners use evidence-based guidelines, which would improve their ability to diagnose health issues during exams, MHealthNews reports.

Mobile apps that include clinical decision support tools helped clinicians diagnose chronic health issues, according to the study led by Suzanne Bakken, alumni professor of nursing at Columbia University School of Nursing.

The study, published in the Journal for Nurse Practitioners, examined the diagnosis rates of nearly 400 nurses during more than 34,000 patient exams and found significant diagnostic rate increases:

  • Seven times more obese and overweight (33.9% vs. 4.8%)
  • Five times more tobacco use (11.9% versus 2.3%)
  • 44 times more adult depression (8.8% versus 0.2%)
  • Four times more pediatric depression (4.6% versus 1.1%)

“What clinicians need is decision support tools that fit into their workflow and remind them of evidence-based practices,” Bakken said in a statement. "Our app focused specifically on the work that nurse practitioners do to identify health problems, counsel patients and coordinate care plans, resulting in higher diagnosis rates and more opportunities for intervention."

The goal of an INQRI-funded project “Dissemination and Implementation of Evidence-Based Methods to Measure and Improve Pain Outcomes” was to disseminate and implement evidence-based approaches to measure and improve pain care and outcomes in a sample of 100 hospitals across the United States. Two webinars are available detailing the results of the project: Webinar I and Webinar II. The interdisciplinary team was led by Susan Beck and Nancy Dunton.

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