Discussion: The Inclusion of Nurses in the Systems Development Life Cycle
In the media introduction to this module, it was suggested that you as a nurse have an important role in the Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC). With a focus on patient care and outcomes, nurses may not always see themselves as contributors to the development of new systems. However, as you may have observed in your own experience, exclusion of nurse contributions when implementing systems can have dire consequences.
In this Discussion, you will consider the role you might play in systems development and the ramifications of not being an active participant in systems development.
Review the steps of the Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC) as presented in the Resources.
Reflect on your own healthcare organization and consider any steps your healthcare organization goes through when purchasing and implementing a new health information technology system.
Consider what a nurse might contribute to decisions made at each stage of the SDLC when planning for new health information technology.
By Day 3 of Week 9
Post a description of what you believe to be the consequences of a healthcare organization not involving nurses in each stage of the SDLC when purchasing and implementing a new health information technology system. Provide specific examples of potential issues at each stage of the SDLC and explain how the inclusion of nurses may help address these issues. Then, explain whether you had any input in the selection and planning of new health information technology systems in your nursing practice or healthcare organization and explain potential impacts of being included or not in the decision-making process. Be specific and provide examples.
By Day 6 of Week 9
Respond to at least two of your colleagues* on two different days, by offering additional thoughts regarding the examples shared, SDLC-related issues, and ideas on how the inclusion of nurses might have impacted the example described by your colleagues.
*Note: Throughout this program, your fellow students are referred to as colleagues.
Submission and Grading Information
To access your rubric:
Week 9 Discussion Rubric
Post by Day 3 and Respond by Day 6 of Week 9
To participate in this Discussion:
Week 9 Discussion
System Development Life Cycle
Nurses have an active role in the System Development Life Cycle (SDLC). Involving a nurse in the various stages is crucial since nurses interact with patients and they know the priorities (Cao & Ball, 2017). For example, adoption of e-prescription system can be suggested by nurses since they know the struggle they get when patients receive the wrong medication. The first stage of planning requires the input of nurses in identifying the scope of the problem and identifying ways to solve it since they have the first-hand information (Schoville & Titler, 2015). The nurses are also needed in the system analysis and design stages that involve identifying and defining the requirements. Nurses know what will improve patient outcomes and thus their input is crucial. The development and integration stage also demands that nurses should be involved to assess if the output is meeting the proposed goals of the system. Nurses are also involved in the implementation stage which requires replacing the old system (Lee, 2017). The healthcare providers are necessary since they will be left to use the patients to provide treatment or diagnosis to patients.
Consequences of not Involving Nurses
When nurses are not involved, they may develop the wrong attitude towards a new system. The negative attitudes will delay the performance of the technology. Additionally, the technology may fail to solve the real problems that nurses are experiencing as they deliver patient care (Lee, 2017). Therefore, nurse involvement in the life cycle is important since it provides an opportunity for them to own the project and propose the real solutions that can be implemented.
Input in Nursing Practice
I have been involved in developing custom clinical systems. I was happy to be involved since I found an opportunity to explain the real issues nurses face. Therefore, I had an impact on the design and functionality of the system making it meet the needs of patients. Failure to consult a nurse would have resulted in a vague system that could not solve real problems.
Cao, Y., & Ball, M. (2017). A hospital nursing adverse events reporting system project: An approach based on the Systems Development Life Cycle. Studies in health technology and informatics, 245, 1351-1351.
Lee, T. Y. (2017). The role and function of informatics nurses in information technology decision-making. Hu Li Za Zhi, 64(4), 5.
Schoville, R. R., & Titler, M. G. (2015). Guiding healthcare technology implementation: a new integrated technology implementation model. CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing, 33(3), 99-107.