May was National Nurse Month! We sat down with Edward Bennett to discuss his experience as a Registered Nurse (RN), the intersection between nurses and technology, and the future of nursing in the US.
Meet Edward Bennett, MSN, RN
Ed’s impressive track record includes 5 years as a Registered Nurse with a BS from Case Western Reserve University and an MS in Nursing Leadership from the Duke University School of Nursing. He’s seen the ins and outs of multiple hospitals’ Emergency Rooms (ERs) and possesses first-hand experience in integrating care coordination technology like MedTrans Go into a nurses’ workflow.
Check out below what Ed had to say about the support that nurses need throughout the year and the effect technology has on efficiently managing patient care!
Ed, what do you love most about being a nurse?
Nurses are the backbone of healthcare and serve as the last safety net for many communities, and as a nurse, I love getting to know all these different groups. I feel like being able to help and connect with so many people has opened up my mind to a lot of different cultures and ways that people live and work.
What are some of the biggest challenges that nurses face in terms of patient throughput?
In the ER, we can never really close. If patients can’t get a bed upstairs on the inpatient side, we can’t shut our doors to stop more patients from funneling in. You just run out of space and personnel and have to figure out how to manage that problem. Being able to get patients out the door and transported home is a huge help because it opens up a bed to treat another patient in.
Across the various hospitals you’ve worked, how have they supported you in trying to get that goal of efficient patient throughput met?
Various hospitals have done it in different ways. Some hospital systems will open up additional beds and provide additional staffing to help decompress the ER. Others have opted to seek help through partnerships with companies like MedTrans Go to find new creative ways to transport people out of the ER. And then some hospital systems have even gone the preventative route with sending staff out to the communities to provide care so more people don’t have to go to the ER. Each support system is different depending on the needs of the community they serve.
For a nurse, what makes technology useful within the hospital setting?
Technology that has nursing input is extremely needed. A lot of times hospitals will introduce technology that is not user-friendly or does not coordinate with nurses’ workflow. Nurses value technology that can make their job more efficient and give them more time for patient care.
What are some of the ways you would like to see hospital leadership engage with the nurses as they’re bringing in new technology?
I would like for hospital leadership to get a gauge of what’s really going on at the ground level. Put some scrubs on, get your hands dirty, and spend a day with your staff to see the workflow inefficiencies on a day-to-day basis.
How has your experience working with MedTrans Go shaped your opinion on use of technology for nurses?
It’s been really refreshing to work with MedTrans Go as your team wants and utilizes nursing input. I remember talking to Cecilia (MedTrans Go Director of Customer Success) when she would come to the ER and suggesting different features that would then be implemented a week or two later and only further improve our patient throughout. MedTrans Go’s technology is a nurse-driven one from top-down.
Over 800,000 nurses are projected to leave the US healthcare industry by 2027. With this impending shortage, how best can hospital leadership ensure their nurses are supported?
Good patient ratios are extremely important, and so is splitting patients up by acuity. Nurses also need to be paid a fair wage, one comparable to other professionals. To retain staff, hospital leadership also needs to consider burnout and that includes making sure nurses are getting breaks and are being fulfilled at their jobs - which can be supplemented by hospitals paying for nurses to go back to school or get new certifications.
How could technology like MedTrans Go help alleviate the issue of burnout in nursing?
Having a technology that’s user-friendly and right at your fingertips really helps with burnout. For example, through MedTrans Go, I could efficiently schedule a ride for a patient by having their address immediately pop-up in the system as I typed it. The access to information and customer service with MedTrans Go is also extremely helpful. At the click of a button, I could figure out where my patient’s ride was and when that transporter would be at the ER. And if there were any issues, I could always directly call someone at MedTrans Go who could figure out a solution.
What’s next for nurses?
It’s a prime time for nurses to branch out and utilize their skills in technology and entrepreneurial spaces. Following COVID, nurses are finding productive and positive ways to impact the healthcare system, and times are changing. I'm excited to see what nursing will look like in the next 5, 10 years, but we’re already seeing a huge leap in the direction of autonomy and independence for nurses.
Thanks for insight on your experiences and the future of nursing and technology, Ed!
Both a nurse and entrepreneur himself, Ed recently founded his own company, Bennett Healthcare Services LLC, to provide needed consulting services to healthcare organizations and start-ups. MedTrans Go is proud to support Ed in his future endeavors and thanks him for his service as an RN!
Want to know more about digital care coordination?
MedTrans Go connects healthcare providers to care coordination service providers to optimize healthcare appointments and dissolve the root causes of patient cancellations which cost the US healthcare industry over $150 billion a year. With MedTrans Go, healthcare providers can request and track services provided by safe, reliable, and vetted medical transportation, interpretation, home health care, and delivery providers in one easy-to-use digital platform.