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Health + Tech | How artificial intelligence can improve nursing care

Doug Halsall, Chairman and CEO, Advanced Integrated Systems

In the rapidly evolving landscape of healthcare, artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a powerful ally in enhancing patient care and streamlining clinical workflows. Among its many applications, AI is playing a pivotal role in assisting nursing professionals, revolutionising the way they deliver care and manage patient interactions. There are various ways in which AI can have a transformative impact on nursing care by improving efficiency, accuracy, and overall patient outcomes.
“Artificial intelligence is the simulation of human intelligence processes by machines, especially computer systems. Specific applications of AI include expert system, natural language processing, speech recognition and machine vision. In general, AI systems work by ingesting large amounts of labelled training data, analysing the data for correlations and patterns, and using these patterns to make predictions about future states.” – techtarget.com.

AI is proving to be a boon for the healthcare industry in general and for nursing care specifically by offering advanced Clinical Decision Support Systems. These systems leverage AI algorithms to analyse vast amounts of patient data, aiding nurses in making informed decisions.

For instance, AI can help identify potential risks, predict patient deterioration, and recommend personalised treatment plans based on historical data and real-time information. An Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system would be ideal for tracking patient history for improved outcomes.

A lot of time is spent on administrative tasks and that can detract from direct patient care. AI-powered tools can automate these tasks, freeing up nurses to focus on patient interaction and critical care. From scheduling appointments to managing patient records, AI can significantly reduce the administrative workload.

In addition to this, Smart wearable devices and sensors equipped with AI algorithms can continuously collect and analyse patient data, providing real-time insights into their health status, improving diagnosis. This allows nurses to detect early warning signs, intervene promptly, and personalise care plans based on individual health trends.

One of the groundbreaking applications of AI in nursing is predictive analytics. By analysing historical patient data, predictions can be made about potential health complications, readmission risks, and patient outcomes. Nurses can use this information to proactively manage high-risk patients, implement preventive measures, and tailor interventions to address specific needs.

AI-driven virtual health assistants are becoming increasingly prevalent in healthcare settings. These digital companions can engage with patients, answer queries, provide medication reminders, and offer educational information. These are tasks nurses would have performed and so it gives them time for other important duties.

In the same way, AI-powered robotics can assist with things like medication dispensing, delivering supplies, and even performing routine tasks like taking vital signs. By automating these processes, nurses can focus on more complex aspects of patient care, improving overall efficiency and reducing the risk of human error.

Efficient communication and collaboration among healthcare teams are critical for providing high-quality patient care. AI-driven communication platforms facilitate seamless information exchange, ensuring that nurses stay informed about patient updates, treatment plans, and other crucial details.

In addition, AI offers nurses opportunities for continuous learning and skill enhancement. Educational platforms powered by AI algorithms can customize learning modules based on individual nurse proficiency, ensuring that training is tailored to specific needs. This not only facilitates ongoing professional development but also ensures that nurses stay abreast of the latest advancements in healthcare practices.

As technology continues to advance, the integration of artificial intelligence in healthcare, particularly in nursing, holds immense promise. AI-driven solutions are not intended to replace the vital role of nurses but rather to enhance their capabilities, allowing them to deliver more personalised, efficient, and patient-centred care.

Embracing these innovations is not just a step forward for healthcare; it’s a leap into a future where the synergy between human expertise and artificial intelligence creates a healthcare system that is smarter, more compassionate, and ultimately more effective and responsive. This is the direction in which we need to move to improve our healthcare system in Jamaica.

- Doug Halsall is the chairman and CEO of Advanced Integrated Systems. Email feedback to doug.halsall@gmail.com and editorial@gleanerjm.com


Published: Sunday | November 19, 2023 | 12:06 AM