This week I read a lot about predictions on where healthcare and nursing are headed and what the future will looked like for both. In the article I read it talked a lot about the future and how technology is developing greatly and as it develops more discoveries are being made especially in healthcare. People are living longer lives due to technology and living in much different ways then they did even just a few years ago.
Scientists predict that hospitals and long term care centers will become less needed as people are living healthier and longer lives. Hospital stays will become shorter with a greater emphasis on providing education on how to treat yourself and diagnose yourself at home and although hospitals will become less used, they will still be around forever because there is too much money to be made in hospitals and in many urgent situations they will forever still be needed and used. On the other hand the baby boomer generation are becoming opposed to putting their parents into long term care facilities and are more commonly providing care for family members at home which will cause less and less long term care facilities to stay in business. Doctor visits will still need to be made but in different ways. Doctor visits will happen on a screen at the comfort of your own home more frequently then at a hospital or office. Also most nursing schools still teach hospital based practices which will need to change as hospitals are becoming less used. Nursing education will focus more on technology services and educating the public which many older generation nurses are having a difficult time accepting and in a way are mourning the roles they once played with their patients. The public is taking the older generations views into account though because they don’t want to change too quickly in fear of losing these nurses and their healthcare experience. They also predict that Robots will start being used in giving care with the basics as technology continues to develop and think that Robots will be used in the OR to help with basics such as cleaning and getting supplies ready and assisting with instruments during surgery. Robots will be soon used in all areas of nursing for the basics in hopes to alleviate the workload of nurses and allow nurses to focus on other areas such as patient care and teaching. Also they are predicting that a greater nursing shortage will arise in the near future because the role of a nurse is changing and as the population increases so does the need for nurses.
Honestly reading this article gave me anxiety. I may not be an older experienced generation nurse but I still feel that same mourning for the change in role of my career. The reason I got into nursing was because I loved the clinical base nursing and performing clinical practices. I also loved learning about the body and how to take care of it. I hope this never goes away.
It the few short years I have seen a big change though. I have seen more teaching emphasized and specific wording enforced into my practice. I have also seen a greater need for nurses and the workload increased along with a great stress in the computer part of nursing. I feel that more than 50% of my shift is spent documenting on the computer and the other 40% educating patients. I feel that I only use 10% clinical skills. I find myself delegating the clinical tasks to PCTs and others so I have enough time to properly chart and teach. It really makes me sad and I too am mourning in a way for the simplicity nursing used to be. I am starting to believe that nursing is going to become a job where all you do is chart and educated and others will be hired to do the clinical tasks. I hope this is not the cast. Although I am sad to see the changes I definitely understand why things are changing the way they are and I am excited to see what the future holds.