Patient-Centeredness & the Persistent Fax Machine

Patient-centered care is one of the six factors of quality in healthcare. Yet, there are many opportunities for improved patient-centered care.

To anyone that has had to fill out a form or receive a form from a healthcare provider or practice, there is a great likelihood of being told to ‘fax it back’.

Yet, how many have access to a fax machine at home?

Next, you are working to find a way to get the information back to or from the healthcare facility or organization that is not through a fax machine.

Knowing most do not have a fax machine, and encountering this issue, this is one example of an opportunity to improve patient-centered care.

In the bigger picture, healthcare has opportunities to explore the healthcare experience through the eyes of patients and unveil the blind spots to truly address patient-centeredness.

This is just one example but there are many others.

The article here provides several factors that contribute to the persistent challenge however, at some point, we will not be using fax machines….

In the meantime, one area of impact is on quality through that patient experience.


~ Dr. Kelley

Time to be Thankful for Nurses

This Thursday we will celebrate another year of Thanksgiving in the U.S. It is often a time to reflect and be thankful for the blessings in our lives. I wanted to take a moment to write about how thankful I am to be a nurse.

happy thanksgiving

I spent a couple of days recently discussing the nursing profession with a small group of nurses from across the country. We discussed the common bond we all share for wanting to help others and the feelings of internal fulfillment when we can provide nursing care to patients and their families. Yet, what is often not discussed is our inherent superpower that holds the potential to benefit the lives of other human beings.

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Nursing workarounds and what they mean for the future of healthcare

Nursing workarounds and what they mean for the future of healthcare. 

Last evening, I spoke to a group of approximately 60 graduate nursing students at Northeastern University in Boston MA.  I spoke on the topic of nurse entrepreneurship and intrapraneurship. The faculty members, Dr. Laura Mylott and Dr. Janet Rico wanted to show their students the different opportunities there are for nurses in the health care arena. Nurse entrepreneurship or intrapreneurship are two career options that we often don’t discuss in our formalized nursing education classes. However, I will tell you that they are very real career options and in many ways will be the only way in which we solve some of the day-to-day problems nurses are faced with at the bedside. The reason why nurses are the only individuals set up to solve these problems is because no one else knows they exist. No one is going to come knocking on the door with a solution to solve problems they don’t know exist.


 I asked the class, “What is a workaround?”. It could have been that no one wanted to speak up but I didn’t get a volunteer to answer the question. So, I turned it around. “Ok. What is a problem you deal with every day and how to you get around it?” I had one student volunteer to tell the group that he works nights. At night, STAT labs are entered at midnight however the system goes down for 30 minutes every night at this time. It affects the timing in which labels are printed and subsequently when they can be drawn, resulted, and acted upon. So, instead of waiting and wasting time, he figured out a way to manually force print the labels. This is the workaround.
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Why aren’t nurses part of the conversation?

A conversation a few months ago led me to wonder (and I should have asked), why isnt a nurse part of this meeting’?



At that time, I was speaking with a physician and a project director about bedside nursing solutions using mobile to address existing workflow challenges. I realized toward the end of the conversation that the problem we, at Nightingale Apps are working to solve with Know My Patient TM, was not well understood by the meeting participants. Yet, had a nurse been part of the conversation, we would have likely had a different outcome.

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Did you miss our #TweetChat today with Kareo?

Today I was invited to host a #TweetChat with Kareo to discuss hot topics that affect us all, nurses, providers, patients and families. We had a wonderful discussion and I’m happy to share the transcript here: 

What I learned today is that we could have discussed each one of the questions in great length. There is a recognition that there are challenges that we face today in accessing and using information from the side or the health care professional and the side of the patient. By getting past the challenges and looking toward how to solve, we can begin to chip away at these challenges and solve these problems that affect us all.

It was wonderful to have hosted this #TweetChat today on the last day of Nurses Week!



Our profile on Florence Nightingale soon to follow!



Lillian Wald, Founder of Henry Street Settlement & Inventor of term ‘Public Health Nursing’

Lillian Wald (1867-1940) is our featured nurse innovator today! Lillian Wald is another nurse pioneer whose efforts have advanced the nursing profession. Lillian received her nursing education from the New York Hospital School for Nurses. From her training and experience, she saw the struggles of the people within the greater New York City community and decided to do something to change the conditions. Initially, her efforts began with founding the Visiting Nurse Service and the Henry Street Settlement in 1893.

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