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Release: Dec. 13, 1999

UI Nursing researchers update widely used reference works

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa nursing researchers have announced the publication of new editions of two nursing reference books they say will foster better communication among nurses, other health professionals and patients, leading to better care for consumers.

The "Nursing Interventions Classification," now in its third edition, and the "Nursing Outcomes Classification," now in its second edition, update and expand previous versions of the reference works. The two classifications contain hundreds of terms describing the treatments -- or interventions -- nurses perform and the changes in patients' health status -- or outcomes -- that result from them. Taken together, the terms in each classification constitute a standard nursing language.

"With regard to patient care, the classifications facilitate communication among nurses in different specialty areas and allow more continuity from one care setting to another," said Joanne McCloskey Dochterman, Ph.D., UI Foundation Distinguished Professor of Nursing and director of the UI's Center for Nursing Classification. Other benefits of the classifications include standardized terms for computerized patient records, an improved ability to aggregate data to evaluate the effectiveness of care and a firm research basis for teaching, McCloskey Dochterman said.

McCloskey Dochterman edited the "Nursing Interventions Classification" with UI nursing professor Gloria Bulechek, Ph.D. The research team that compiled the interventions classification included more than 40 nursing researchers, practicing nurses, information specialists, statisticians and doctoral candidates. The new edition contains 486 interventions arranged within a hierarchy of domains and classes to facilitate the selection of appropriate treatments, and also features updated linkages with a related system of standardized nursing diagnoses.

UI nursing professors Marion Johnson, Ph.D., and Meridean Maas, Ph.D., and associate professor Sue Moorhead, Ph.D., edited the "Nursing Outcomes Classification," which draws on contributions from more than 40 investigators and collaborators. The classification's 260 outcomes include labels, definitions, indicators and references, and have been developed with feedback from nurses in clinical settings.

The "Nursing Interventions Classification" and "Nursing Outcomes Classification" are aimed primarily at practicing nurses and nursing educators and students, McCloskey Dochterman said, as well as more specialized audiences such as developers and vendors of information systems. The classifications have gained in popularity since they were first introduced, and are recognized by the American Nurses Association. They are also used internationally.