How Nurses Are Using Technology To Improve Patient Care
As the role of nurses becomes increasingly multifaceted and independent, it’s more important than ever to utilize technology to work efficiently within the shifting medical landscape. In the nursing field, this means not only using a variety of tools to assess patients, but also ensuring a timely and systematic log of the patients’ medications and other pertinent information. That way, they can work autonomously or with physicians to quickly and accurately aid their patients.
As one could imagine, this requires exacting detail and a nurse’s full attention. In order for Natalie Saffos, a telemetry nurse at Hahnemann University Hospital, to focus on providing comprehensive care for her patients, she’s depended on two Subaru vehicles—named Sally and Frankie!—to safely navigate her daily commute. That way, even the snowiest roads or troublesome conditions won’t stop her from getting to work on time and caring for her patients.
What exactly does being a telemetry nurse entail? Is there specialized training?
There is specialized training; when I was first hired, I was required to take a weeklong course that concentrated on heart rhythms, medications and emergencies. Our patient population is diverse; chest pain, congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, renal and liver disease caused by heart failure, etc.
What led you to the telemetry specialty?
The quick paced and challenging environment is a good fit for me. After graduating from Drexel University’s Nursing Program, I was fortunate to be able to join the Hahnemann family.
How does technology factor into your day-to-day responsibilities?
Technology is an integral part of a nurse’s responsibility at Hahnemann. Documentation of a patient’s medications, assessments, and other important and pertinent information is all contained in a patient’s chart held on a secure networked system. Medical personnel, including physicians, nurses, therapists, laboratory technicians, etc. are able to access patient charts by using their individual employee account. Hahnemann’s system allows only those authorized individuals to retrieve and review a patient’s medical information while completely protecting the integrity of a patient’s privacy.
What’s something readers might be surprised to learn about the nursing profession?
Today, nursing is not simply passing out medications and providing assistance with activities of daily living. More and more hospitals, such as Hahnemann, are transitioning into an all nurse model, which simply stated equates to 100% of patient care is provided by nurses. Nurses make decisions moment to moment, both with physicians and for physicians, to provide patient status updates particularly when a nurse determines the need for a “doctor’s order.”
What model Subaru do you drive?
An interesting and quite timely question! Prior to March 14 of this year, I had been happily driving “Sally Subaru,” my 2001 Subaru Forester, which I inherited from my older brother in 2009. My brother inherited “Sally” from my mother in 2005, when he went off to college. When I began my clinical rotations, both my brother and my mom wanted me to have a safe and reliable car for my early morning commutes in the dead of winter. Sadly, just a few weeks ago, my mom insisted that I give up “Sally,” after over 200,000 dependable miles and 16 wonderful years, to buy a new car. Without hesitation, I went to the Subaru dealership and bought a brand new 2016 Subaru Forester, my new friend “Frankie the Forester!”
So fun! Where did you purchase Frankie?
[I purchased it from] Subaru of Cherry Hill.
Did your current role-play a factor in you deciding to purchase a Subaru?
Absolutely! For me, especially being a nurse, there was no other option. In the 16 years my family drove our Subaru Forester (Sally), we never worried about whether or not we had transportation to travel near or far. In all kinds of weather, we always had the most reliable and safest car, so why would I ever buy anything but a Subaru. Being a nurse requires me to travel in any kind of weather at any time. There are no snow days for nurses, having a Subaru makes me feel safe, and I know I will always be able to get to work on time.
How has your Subaru made your life easier?
Again, never having to entertain the question “will my car make it?” and knowing that I am able to drive in all types of weather alleviates any stress associated with traveling to work or for pleasure; I just get in my Subaru and go! Certainly having a brand new Subaru is wonderful, because Subaru continues to update their cars providing all kinds of luxuries like heated seats, a moon roof and even a backup camera, to name a few. Simply knowing that I do not have to worry about dependability and safety makes everyday life easy.
Has there been a moment where your career in healthcare and being an owner of a Subaru has intersected?
Yes, of course. When it snowed 15 inches this past winter, I had not a second of worry. I simply went outside and cleared my car of the snow and my Subaru took me safely to work. Along my route to work, I passed many, many other vehicles stuck on the road, because their cars could not handle all types of weather, like my Subaru. Being a nurse is extremely important to me and I cannot ever be in a position where I am unable to drive safely to work; that is why I own a Subaru.
For more information about finding the right ride for you, visit Subaru, here.This is a paid partnership between Subaru and Philadelphia Magazine