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Information Systems in Healthcare: Overview

Being able to manage the available information is a crucial requirement for a healthcare expert in the modern era of information technology and innovative technological solutions. For this purpose, the active use of information systems is required since the identified concepts allow managing the available data and arranging it respectively. Particularly, the use of the bar code system can be seen as an important shorthand for delivering crucial data about particular medications and preventing the scenarios in which medications are misused.

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The usage of bar codes was originally suggested as the means of managing misuse of medicine in the healthcare setting and the following drop in positive patient outcomes. The adoption of a bar code as the key tool for data transfer allows preventing the scenarios in which a particular drug is mismanaged and administered in an untimely manner. However, the proposed strategy also has certain limitations. Particularly, the computerized order entry is likely to lead to a drop in the rates of communication between a nurse and a patient, thus, affecting the quality of care.

Bar Code Medication Administration: Example

The use of bar codes can be seen as one of the crucial steps toward enhancing the quality of care. For instance, the provision of bar codes in the ICU context may demand the active use of applications that could help reduce the amount of time for handling the provided data and determining the needs of a specific patient. Taking the setting as specific as the veteran care environment, one must admit that making a decision in a timely manner is essential to the successful outcome and the provision of the appropriate drugs are essential (van der Veen et al., 2017). Therefore, the availability of the identified device in the setting of a nursing point-of-care facility will determine the possibility of a recovery in a large number of cases.

In the example mentioned above, a nurse will need to deploy the bar code reading software to locate crucial information about a particular medication and, thus make a decision of whether to administer the specified drug to a veteran or not. The case under analysis shows that the use of bar codes actually helps label medicine appropriately to avoid confusion and provide essential information for fast decision-making (Ma, Jheng, Jheng, & Hou, 2017). However, at the same time, the specified solution requires training and the active use of advanced skills from nurses.

Bar Code Medication Administration: Experience

The use of bar codes can be deployed successfully in the environment of acute care. The specified decision is fully justified by the specifics of the identified setting. Without the necessary to communicate with patients during the provision of healthcare services, the members of the ICU setting need accurate data about a patient and their needs, including the factors that may improve their health status and those that may lead to its further deterioration (Shah, Lo, Babich, Tsao, & Bansback, 2016). Thus, bar codes must be seen as an important approach toward maintaining the levels of quality consistent within the realm of healthcare.

However, the identified approach necessitates the consistent training of nurses and the active provision of nurse education to ensure that staff members are cable of differentiating between the instructions or different types of medication. When being a nurse, I had a rather negative experience of failing to decipher the information provided as a bar code and, thus, delivering the healthcare services of moderate quality to a patient. In fact, the identified occurrence can be seen as a rather lucky outcome since the complete misinterpretation of data and the following aggravation of a patient’s condition could have taken place. Thus, it is essential to focus on training the nursing staff to discern between different types of drugs and to deliver the services of the finest quality to the target population.


Information systems play an important role in healthcare since they allow arranging the existing data in an orderly fashion and identify the necessary information within a comparatively short amount of time. However, the successful implementation of the approaches existing within the specified systems depends on nurses’ ability to use respective technology and be capable of making decisions fast based on the obtained information.

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The use of bar codes as the tool for providing nurses with essential data is also problematic due to the threat of misinterpreting the information due to flawed equipment or the inability to use it properly. As a result, the threat of a negative patient outcome rises exponentially, which limits the opportunities of delivering proper nursing care. Therefore, a reconsideration of the current approach toward introducing the bar code system to the nursing setting is required. For instance, it is crucial to provide staff members with a chance to acquire the necessary skills first. While using bar code reading equipment may not be excruciatingly difficult, nurses will spend a significant amount of time translating the information into the language that they understand unless they undergo specific training. Therefore, the active introduction of IT tools for managing information within a nursing setting is important, yet an appropriate platform for instilling changes must be prepared. As a result, delivering better nursing care due to better use of the available data will become a possibility.


Ma, P. L., Jheng, Y. W., Jheng, B. W., & Hou, I. C. (2017). Using Modified-ISS Model to Evaluate Medication Administration Safety during Bar Code Medication Administration Implementation in Taiwan Regional Teaching Hospital. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 245, 1370-1370.

Shah, K., Lo, C., Babich, M., Tsao, N. W., & Bansback, N. J. (2016). Bar code medication administration technology: A systematic review of impact on patient safety when used with computerized prescriber order entry and automated dispensing devices. The Canadian Journal of Hospital Pharmacy, 69(5), 394-402.

van der Veen, W., van den Bemt, P. M., Wouters, H., Bates, D. W., Twisk, J. W., de Gier, J. J.,… Ros, J. J. (2017). Association between workarounds and medication administration errors in bar-code-assisted medication administration in hospitals. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 25(4), 385-392.

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