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The Use of PDAs for Medical/Surgical Nursing

written by: Lashan Clarke • edited by: Anurag Ghosh • updated: 11/18/2010

PDA is valuable for a staff nurse or a nursing student who would like extra information to properly help with patient care. By using the medical surgical nursing PDA, the nurse is better prepared for any surprises that come his or her way.

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    An Introduction to PDAs

    This is one area of health care technology that is emerging rapidly for its clinical uses and is something quite important medical professionals. A PDA stands for “Personal Digital Assistant.” It is a handheld device in which any good and reliable medical application can be downloaded and installed in an operating system to keep track of information about treating patients, doing a physical and history examination, medication databases, medical procedures, disease management and other diagnostic elements.

    The nursing care program using a PDA can be of immense help within most medical situations. This is a big advantage as reliable information is available, and the storage capacity to hold a large amount of databases is just a pen touch away. Nurses can properly conduct nursing procedures and maintain control during patient care. Today there is quite a number of software programs available for nurses using a PDA and quite a variety of ways a PDA can be used in medical and surgical nursing. It can be seen as a small and quick handbook that a nurse can use to search for general information about a patient’s symptoms. A PDA can be of immense help during emergency situations as software can be downloaded to outline what exactly can be done to save a life. The software and medical surgical nursing PDA can also be used to review disease complications.

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    Nursing Tasks & Procedures

    A medical surgical nursing PDA can be used to help a nurse with her daily tasks. These can include a row of information related to the procedures a nurse must carry out daily. It can also be used to outline unfamiliar tasks or procedures. Some of the software available will give detailed information to a nurse. This can be used as a refresher when an uncommon procedure must be done. Images and a list of complications can also be viewed simultaneously.

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    A Quick Handbook

    The great thing about using a PDA for a nurse is how quickly information can be accessed on this handheld device. Therefore, the PDA can be seen as a small and quick handbook that a nurse can use to search for general information about a patient’s disease symptoms. It can help during emergency situations as software can be downloaded to outline what exactly can be done to save a life. The software and medical surgical nursing PDA can also be used to review disease complications.

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    Extensive Drug Database

    Nurses are constantly needed to administer and prescribe drugs. They must be aware of the correct doses to administer, and the contraindications for certain patients such as pregnant women. There are so many treatment options available when it comes to medication, but the use of a medical surgical nursing PDA can reduce the amount of human errors associated with giving the wrong dose or the wrong medication. The software purchased and installed will have it all listed for you. Therefore, a PDA in the palm of the medical surgical nurse’s hand is a powerful tool in patient care and management.

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    References

    CBS Interactive Limited. "PDAs and laptops help nurses dispense drugs." 2009. Available at: http://www.silicon.com/management/public-sector/2006/11/16/pdas-and-laptops-help-nurses-dispense-drugs-39164007/

    Davenport, C. B. (October, 2004) "What Nurses Need to Know about Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), (OJNI). Vol. 8, No. 3 [Online]. Available at http://ojni.org/8_3/davenport.html