With the prodding of new federal legislation, electronic health records (EHRs) are rapidly becoming part of the daily practice of hospital nurses — the frontline providers of care. In the first large study of its kind, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing determined that nurses working with EHRs consistently reported more improvements to nursing care and better health outcomes for patients than nurses working in hospitals without this technology.
Journal of Nursing Administration
A study of more than 16,000 nurses working at 316 hospitals in four states indicates that “implementation of an EHR may result in improved and more efficient nursing care, better care coordination, and patient safety,” wrote lead author Ann Kutney-Lee, PhD, RN, a health outcomes researcher at Penn Nursing, in the . Her co-author is Penn Nursing fellow Deena Kelly, RN.
At the same time, the authors wrote, “It is important to note that having a basic EHR was associated with better outcomes independently of nurse staffing, indicating that they both play an important role in quality of care.”