Canadian Journal of Nursing Informatics

Discharging Patients Safely With Follow-up Care and Apps

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MOBILE TECHNOLOGY COLUMN

Our column on mobile technologies and applications (Apps) is written by Jeanette Centeno a nurse at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in New Jersey who currently works in the Spinal Cord Unit. This facility is well known for its innovative rehab and nursing care.

By Jeanette Centeno, RN

COLUMN

My Plate Calorie Tracker Navigating through the world of nursing as a new nurse can be challenging, fun, and at times scary. You jump into the role with enthusiasm and vigor only to realize the amount of information you still need to learn. You go through orientation mostly unscathed and realize that your nursing career is vastly changing everyday. Patients have become customers and customers have become savvy. So how do you ensure patient safety, follow-up care, and compliance, in a busy world?

First, you follow your hospitals policy and procedure during discharge and provide instructions for follow-up care that may include appointments, dietary changes, exercise, and so on. Secondly, you can reach out to the nursing informatics personnel in your facility to further assist you and the patient with information that is pertinent to his or her care. Thirdly, you can inform and educate the patient on how to use Apps that can assist with their current diagnosis and state of health.

For instance, the majority of the current patient population own smart phones, which can make it easier for the patient to research and attain health-related information. For instance, a newly diagnosed diabetic patient may need supervision and guidance. Some of the Apps available to assist during this transition include:

  • Waterlogged – (Free, iOS) – which keeps tract of water intake and reminds patients when they need to drink. Very user friendly and encourages hydration.
  • My Plate Calorie Tracker (Free, iOS and Web version)- Great tool to help patients to watch their calorie intake, by inputting their current weight, goal weight and calories. Fantastic for recording and planning healthy meals and encouraging the patient to make healthy changes through a friendly forum.

As a nurse, it is important to remember the needs of the patient, listen to their concerns, and support self-management of their health. Using Apps can foster confidence and compliance and support a great relationship between health care providers and their patients.

RESOURCES

Waterlogged App: http://waterlog.gd

My Plate Calorie Tracker Web Version: http://www.livestrong.com/myplate/

My Plate Calorie Tracker App – https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/myplate-calorie-tracker/id502317923?mt=8

Relax Melodies: Sleep Sounds, White Noise and Fan App – https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/relax-melodies-sleep-sounds-white-noise-fan/id314498713?mt=8

Sugar Sense – Diabetes, Blood Glucose Mgmt App – https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sugar-sense-diabetes-app-blood-glucose-mgmt/id880725347?mt=8

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