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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Mary A. Curran, RN, PhD (University of North Carolina-Charlotte)
Description: This book, written in four sections, is a presentation of basic computer characteristics, how computers enhance nurses' productivity, the impact of the Internet on information retrieval and exchange, computers as tools to improve patient care, and the role of nursing in information system development.
Purpose: This book is written to help nurses discover "the infinite number of ways in which computers can be used to improve patient care and further the nurse's career."
Audience: Nurses are the intended audience. In addition to the author, many knowledgeable nursing informatics specialists contributed to the book.
Features: All the chapters show great continuity. Each begins with objectives and ends with a summary. Useful content, relevant learning exercises, and pertinent references are included in all chapters. Tables, figures and displays are found throughout the book and add to the reader's understanding. The index enhances subject retrieval. A minor criticism would be the single appendix (Special Keys on a Computer Keyboard). It seems an afterthought and not in keeping with the organization, relevance, and quality of the rest of the volume.
Assessment: This book is a needed and welcome addition to the nursing informatics armamentarium. Well written and timely, it can be used as an introductory undergraduate text or by any practicing nurse interested in learning more about the information technology and systems that are impacting the profession.