"When you get those rare moments of clarity, those flashes when the universe makes sense, you try desperately to hold on to them. They are the life boats for the darker times, when the vastness of it all, the incomprehensible nature of life is completely illusive. So the question becomes, or should have been all a long... What would you do if you knew you only had one day, or one week, or one month to live. What life boat would you grab on to? What secret would you tell? What band would you see? What person would you declare your love to? What wish would you fulfill? What exotic locale would you fly to for coffee? What book would you write?"

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Go-Live Success

Well, as promised- I have returned for a second time in under a week! That's already an accomplishment! Also, as promised- I want to tell you all about how our Go-Live went. Now remember I'm not naming my hospital network or the system we went live with, but refer to my last post for a clue... Now anyway, the system is amazing, just like I knew it would be. It is fascinating having had the privilege of learning the system since September and teaching it to others, but so far only having seen it with fake patients. I was so eager just to get to see it work for real! As we drew closer and closer to the Go-Live Flipswitch, my coworkers fear and anxiety levels rose but my excitement drew higher.

Getting to work with it all weekend after that moment has been fantastic and very eye-opening. I remember having had "play time" on one of my last days of my own training where we were allowed to just play around and practice anything so that we felt completely ready to help once we went-live. I practiced and practiced and I thought surely, I know everything know- What other situation could arise that I don't know how to do?

Well, I should have slapped myself right there because the rest of the weekend I was "go-Live support" which entailed me running around the hospital ( I literally ran up and down some stairs a few occasions) in order to help all three of our units and the ICU, and handle any problems that were arising. Needless to say, my "to-do" list was about 20 items long and it kept me busy all 12 hours of my shift. I would cross one thing off and be on my way to handle another and then on that route another problem would occur. So, point of the story is I thought I knew how to handle everything but then when real patients are in with unique individual situations and the patients aren't fake, certain charting queries come up and there needs to be a firm solution on how to handle that. I was put on the spot many times and had to rack my brain at 3 am in order to get a solution.

It is interesting watching people learn. Like I said before, I had the opportunity all fall to teach fellow nurses, PCAs, and Nurse managers on how to use the system. We faced a lot of kickback, frustration, tears, confusion, etc. And although I saw a lot of frustration with the Go-Live as well, overall these nurses knew that frustration was not going to help their patient and that if they just sit back and let us teach them how to handle the problem, they would go a lot further. Therefore a lot more health care personnel were a lot more open to learning this time around since we were working with real patients, real time, real problems. It was also delightful getting a lot more "Ah-ha!" moments from our users.

It is a known fact that users always learn faster when emerged inside of a real situation. We can only teach these users so much and get them to remember when we are working with "John Playdough" instead of a real patient, and when we are teaching 2-3 months away from the Go-Live day. And yet when these users are using it every second of their shift because they have to for their real patients, they pick it up much faster. Just like learning a language- You learn French much better stuck in the middle of France than you do in a classroom.

Overall this whole experience so far has reinforced within my own self that I love informatics, I love teaching people and I still love healthcare. I can't wait to grow inside this field and to accomplish more tasks. I love being in charge of projects around the hospital and reporting to and talking directly to high-up administration (literally had multiple conversations with the vice president of my hospital over the weekend!) not because of a power trip- but because I like being trusted and knowing that people believe I can accomplish difficult tasks.

Well, another weekend of work ahead-stay tuned! In other news, I get to go to my orientation for my masters program tonight! Super awesome! And next Tuesday I start my class! So exciting! Nerdddddddd. :-)

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