The International Classification for Nursing Practice: a Tool to Support Nursing Practice?
Nurses have been slow to realise the uniqueness of their data and the importance of data management across the profession. This has resulted in nursing being neglected as a partner in healthcare because the data nurses collect cannot be easily retrieved from the patient record and is not widely used to support nursing practice. Nurses, as they should, have rejected language classification systems that are inadequate or inappropriate, but with the implementation of electronic health records, consensus on language classification must be achieved. One problem has been finding an appropriate terminology/s that represents the spectrum of nursing practice while making sense to both the user and computer. In 1989 the International Council of Nurses began work to achieve this and the International Classification for Nursing Practice (ICNP?) was born. This paper provides an insight into language classification, explores the ICNPs a tool for nursing practice and discusses some of the projects undertaken thus far.