VU RN BSN,
Sorry for the delay in responding. I was attempting to let other's contribute before chiming in. Seeing that in the last 30 days:
1) I have worked on a gap analysis comparing the benefits, risks and functionality of several different software products that would potentially support bench marking of care, regulatory requirements, documentation and billing in our outpt rehab department.
2) Completed a week long analysis and training of the OR department's scheduling, documentation, MM and billing functions.
3) Recieved training in preparation for our physician documentation project
4) Assisted in the build of electronic assessments for the ED
5) Been project lead for software upgrades in the Sleep Lab and Food Service depts
6) Championed the creation of an order set Committee in prep for CPOE
7) Provided new hire training on the nursing documentation and order entry systems
8) Revised the change request form, completed multiple application forms, user request forms, etc
There are ususally more projects to accomplish than you have hours in the day or staff in the department to complete.
That being said, on the subject of providing answers to the questions about whether you should pursue an informatics career or not - thats a question you have to search for the answer within yourself. Unfortunately I cant answer that question for you.
I've shared many times how I made my decision - I fell in love with the specialty, the technology and its ability to improve clinical practice and patient care. Yes after 10+ years there definately are days that I threaten to go back to practicing clinically full time. There are days, weeks and months when I wonder why I switched specialties, why I keep championing the use of the system(s) as designed or fighting with vendors to design better systems........ but let me have just one success... one time when a nurse, doc or other clinician walks up to me and says: this functionality or feature really helped me access best practice data, document the care I delivered, helped me with decision support, made it quicker or more convient for me to do my job, or safer for my patient, etc. Let me just have one convo like that and all the other challenges are forgotten.... for awhile. Five characteristics needed to succeed in informatics. Oh, there are more than five but I will stick with the short list.
1) You need to be a proactive, decisive, independent critical thinker - read that as you dont wait for someone to tell you to do something if you see a problem. If you bring up a problem you also come with at least one solution.
2) You manage change well - you are comfortable with change. If you cant manage it how are you going to assist others in managing it?
3) You have an ability to see the big picture and not just your own point of view
4) Hard work does not scare you
5) You are a good teacher, communicator and peace maker and have excellent social skills - sometimes the "softer" skills are the most important
Oh, I will add a #6 it goes without saying you can learn the technical aspects of the specialty.
Gotta go to a staff meeting...........
Quote from VU RN BSN
Mijourney, I've been asking and wondering all the same questions!
I sure wish someone would respond to this thread and provide answers.