Standardized nursing coding systems are gaining popularity in most nursing practices. Standardized codes are sets of terminology to communicate within a sphere of specialty. Standardized codes are useful and are highly efficient for use by health care providers. This is to the extent that most governments have adopted laws to enforce the use of electronic medical record systems. The implementation of a federally mandated electronic medical records system, therefore, poses a challenge to nursing professionals and others who must be prepared to utilize standardized codes for the new system. According to Rutherford (2008), “Advanced communications among nurses and other medical practitioners is a key benefit of using a standardized health care language.”
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The reason behind the standardized code system is that different people form their own short phrases to explain a condition or situation. Likewise, the recipients are likely to derive an entirely different meaning from the meaning intended. To avoid the damaging consequences that would occur, decision makers in the health sector have decided to come up with a standardized language. Common family nursing terminologies include; home care, public health, intense care, acute care, and nursing care, all of which have attached meanings to assist other specialists understand the intended meaning.
The value of standardized codification can be explained using the benefits of a common nursing language. The importance of using these systems is to allow nurses and other health practitioners to pass clear, precise, and complete information (American Nurses Association, 2008). From my own experience, such phrases as “danger for distorted parent- child liking” are vague and can be interpreted differently. Hence, there appears a need for a standardized system. Computer-enabled coding systems provide a comprehensive analysis of data, making communication between nurses concise and complete (Swan, Lang & McGinley, 2009).
Some people do not understand the need of using the standardized systems. Rutherford (2008) quotes a nurse declaring that she fails to understand on the use of the standardized documentation. To inform her and others who lack to comprehend on the relevance of use of standardized code system in the health sector, it is crucial to address to the value of using a standard language in nursing practice. The health sector is one of the vital and sensitive sectors in any given economy. Therefore, misrepresentation of facts is likely to lead to devastating damage in the general health care of individuals. Thus, standardized nursing code language is vital for use in hospitals and other health care services for effective communication between health care providers.
From my experience, standardized language cannot be limited to one specialty. It is vital across all nursing activities. A good example is when carrying out a safety evaluation; information on possible errors and preventable issues is coded to assist the doctors and various agencies using it for monitoring and conducting confidential analyses. Another example is the risk adjustment, which is useful to group patients according to stage of ailment. July/August AHIMSA library journal supports my thoughts that standardized language cannot be used in one specialty only since all nursing activities are interlinked (AHIMSA Care Center 2010).
Also, from my personal experience as a family nurse practitioner, there are various standardization codes that we use. For example, we use the risk analysis standardization code to track the health risks of a patient. This code also provides the nurse with the best care solution for a patient. This code groups patients into key groups such as special care and home care.
In conclusion, a standardized coding system ensures that there is uniform communication in medical and nursing care. This makes messages sent to be clear, precise, and complete. It also ensures that the recipients of information understand in a way without biases.
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