Healthcare Technology Featured Article

July 21, 2023

How Can Family Nurses Utilize Telehealth?

The American healthcare industry owes its digitalization to the pandemic. Examples include trends like the use of AI in diagnostics, telemedicine, 3D printing, and more. While most healthcare professionals have jumped on the bandwagon, one sector has fallen behind.

That would be family nursing. The state of family nurse practitioners’ responsibilities made it difficult for them to shift to an online framework. For example, they are responsible for creating treatment plans, maintaining records, performing physical exams, prescribing medication, and more.

However, in the last year, this sector has started focusing on telehealth education. Do you aspire to become a family nurse? Then, you should understand the role of telehealth or virtual health, some tips, and more.

Steps to Becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner

Ideally, telehealth in family nursing is the use of technology to offer healthcare services. It can include medical devices, electronic data, telecommunication technology, and more. Moreover, telehealth can be remote or direct patient service.

Do you want to know how to become a family nurse practitioner? These steps should help:

  1. Studying hard and giving your National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for registered nurses
  2. Getting a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) degree
  3. Obtaining a Master of Science in Nursing with a family nursing practitioner specialty (MSN-FNP)
  4. Getting an FNP certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)

According to Carson-Newman University, the next step is to apply for a state license as a family nurse practitioner.

Understanding the Role of Telehealth in the Family Nursing Sector

The use of telehealth in family nursing offers benefits like online patient portals, instant messaging, email communication, seamless information sharing, automatic scheduling, and more. Therefore, you can administer patient care by remotely monitoring, educating, following up, and collecting data.

This way FNPs can provide support or help to patients with chronic illnesses remotely. If you are a family nurse practicing telehealth, you can manage, use, and perform:

  • Comprehensive health assessments on online platforms
  • Formulate diagnoses to establish care plans
  • Positive relationships with the patients
  • Streamline administrative tasks and collaborate with doctors

Furthermore, telehealth solutions allow you to provide educational resources and 24x7 counseling to your patients. An FNP can ensure improved collaboration, increased performance, enhanced communication, and more.

According to the American Health Association (AHA), there are various changes crucial for telehealth’s growth. Examples include a change in technology accessibility in rural areas, federal research on telehealth’s cost-benefits, resolution of legal challenges, and more.

3 Tips for Using Telehealth as an FNP

To offer the best telehealth as a family nurse, you need to follow a few parameters. These will help you collaborate with your patients and give them the best services.

  • Understanding telehealth etiquettes: Position the camera away from distracting backgrounds, wear neutral clothes, hold eye contact, show empathy, and more.
  • Inter-personal expansion: As an FNP, you can collaborate with your colleagues on a global level from anywhere and anytime. This will help you capitalize on the expansion of your services.
  • Security and privacy requirements: Ensure that the telehealth applications are compatible with the HIPAA guidelines. It should protect personal data and have a secure link between the FNP and the patient.

Furthermore, if you are consulting with someone outside the state, be aware of the rules and regulations of that area.

How Can Institutions Promote Telehealth Education?

Most institutions are looking for family nurses with prior experience in telehealth practices. Hence, universities are focusing on the ideal 4P framework. It will provide you with comprehensive and appropriate training in telehealth.

With it, you can conceptualize ideas and evaluate outcomes. The 4Ps include the following:

  1. Planning: Select the telehealth delivery method or program.
  2. Preparing: Learn and establish an understanding of it.
  3. Providing: Offering family nursing care through this program.
  4. Performance evaluation: Analyzing its effectiveness and seamlessness.

The Bottom Line

Telehealth has drastically transformed the American healthcare industry into a better version of itself. According to McKinsey, virtual health services are closing the digital divide and expanding accessibility. Hence, family nurse practitioners are working hard to leverage this benefit.

After you become an FNP by following the steps mentioned, you need to understand the role of telehealth in family nursing. Examples include online health assessments, affordable pricing, and more.

As a family nurse, you need to follow a few tips to make the most out of the telehealth operation. For example, you need to learn about telehealth etiquette, be aware of regulation variations, etc.

Your willingness to learn about telehealth in FNP should compel institutions to contribute to telehealth education. It includes the 4Ps, namely planning, preparing, providing, and performance evaluation.

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