Nursing Informatics

Nursing Informatics Terminology Self Study- End user testing & Software sunsetting

Sunsetting: refer to something out or terminating it. The term is often used in computer hardware and software products as part of the business plan. Computer software vendors usually sunset an older version when new version is available, therefore, old version will be no longer supported by the company, thus new upgrade or replacement will be necessary, and software vendors receive profits. Sunsetting usually occurs after 2 or 3 upgrades so that organizations that have chosen to delay upgrading may be faced with potential failure of its computer system. Hardware may also be sunsetted, usually after a few years.

Therefore, in healthcare setting, if the organization receives notice that a software program currently in use is to be sunsetted, the informatics nurse realizes that the organization must upgrade or replace the software because sunsetting means that the software will no longer be supported by the company.

 

End-user: refer to healthcare workers who use an information system to view or document client information. End users are identified and grouped by job class responsibilities to guide what applications access they will have in the information system. Usually used user class to define the level of access to an information system.

End-user testing: usually used to identify errors. Testing often included the development of test plan, the creation of test scripts, system testing (end-user testing), and integrated testing. Successful testing requires the involvement of staff who perform day-to-day work (end users) to ensure that the computer system functions correctly and meets the organization’s needs, because end users are aware of the current process and expected outcomes. Analysis may include asking end users to carry out specific tests, interviews with users, questionnaires regarding usability, comparative testing with users comparing work on two different systems, direct observation (over-the-shoulder), and indirect observation (audio/video feeds). Computer-generated data may be evaluated for accuracy and errors. Problem areas should be tested again before the person responsible for that area indicates approval and sign off. After system testing, then integrated testing can be start.

  • End -user testing – Pilot Approach: using a pilot, the project team rolls out the new system in sites that are representative of the complete system. This means that certain locations or departments serve as “alpha” pilot test sites, followed by the “beta” pilot test sites. Alpha testing and beta testing is commonly used when testing new versions of vendor software and is typically done with a pilot to minimize potential impact on the rest of the organization.
    • Advantages: being able to train end-user, requires less financial resources, less time-consuming, less complex to create, test, and develop policies /procedure.

Testing: (from software development to presenting/ hand over to customer)

  • A unit test – done to test each individual component to ensure that it is as defect-free as possible. Unit testing should be done after every modification and errors fixed immediately.
  • Integration testing (functional testing)- occurs between unit and system testing to test functionally grouped components.
    • (the first two testing commonly used to produce a zero-defect product, meaning users should not see these types of fundamental error.
  • System testing – tests the entire system is working properly. This level of testing tests the interfaces with all systems as well as test full-system functioning.
  • User acceptance testing – performed by end users, prior to accepting the delivered system.

 

Resources:

Hunt, E. C., Sproat, S. B., & Kitzmiller, R. R.. (2004) The nursing informatics implementation guide.

Schwalbe, K. (2016) Information technology project management. 8th ed.

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