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Nurses’ Perspectives of Person-Centered Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation in a Digital Hospital

Burridge, Letitia Helen, PhD, MPH, BNurs(Hons)1,2; Foster, Michele, PhD, BSocWk(HonsI), GradCert(Higher Ed)1,2,3,4; Jones, Rachel, MClinRehab, GradDip(Nursing), BNurs1,5,6; Geraghty, Timothy, MBBS, FAFRM(RACP)1,2,3; Atresh, Sridhar, DNB(Ortho), MS(Ortho), DOrtho, MBBS, FAFRM(RACP)5,6

doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000201
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Purpose Nurses’ perspectives on electronic medical record (eMR) use and compatibility with person-centered care (PCC) in rehabilitation were explored.

Design This cross-sectional, qualitative study involved nurses practicing in a spinal cord injury service within the first Australian tertiary hospital to implement a large-scale eMR system.

Methods Ten focus groups were audio-recorded and transcribed for thematic analysis.

Findings The three themes were (1) discovering how eMR fits in a specialty setting, (2) making eMR work through adaptability, and (3) realizing the impact of eMR inclusion in the nurse–patient relationship.

Conclusions The eMR introduction triggered compensatory practices to manage the complexities and shortcomings of electronic documentation. Nurses adapted routines and reoriented workflows to preserve PCC.

Clinical Relevance While absorbing eMR-driven changes in documentation, rehabilitation nurses must in parallel manage evolving nursing practice norms in the digital environment in order to sustain PCC. This requires strategic foresight and commitment.

1 The Hopkins Centre: Research for Rehabilitation and Resilience, Menzies Health Institute Queensland, Griffith University, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

2 Division of Rehabilitation, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia.

3 Division of Rehabilitation, Metro South Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

4 School of Human Services and Social Work, Griffith University, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

5 Queensland Spinal Cord Injuries Service, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

6 Spinal Injuries Unit, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia.

Correspondence: Letitia Helen Burridge, Division of Rehabilitation, Room 1SI.32.4, Level 1, Building 17, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Ipswich Road, Woolloongabba, Queensland 4102, Australia. E-mail:

Cite this article as: Burridge, L. H., Foster, M., Jones, R., Geraghty, T., & Atresh, S. (2019).Nurses’ perspectives of person-centered spinal cord injury rehabilitation in a digital hospital. Rehabilitation Nursing, 00(0), 00–00. doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000201

© 2019 Association of Rehabilitation Nurses.
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