Nursing Informatics core competencies for Portugal

The first steps in informatics for health professionals in Portugal started in the 1980s. During that period, we only saw little formative spaces targeted to the use of specific programmes that focus on processing text and, promptly, using health software for the management of administrative data.

We assisted to the beginning of nursing electronic records research (final of 90th years and begin of the century), which allowed the development of a new data model for Nursing Information Documentation, in terms of its structure and content. For this, debates about terminologies, standards and norms for Electronic Health Records have become essential. By the impact that these guidelines represent for Nursing documentation, the Portuguese Nurses Association has compiled a document about “Basic architectural principles and key technical and functional requirements” (2007) in which there are suggested guidelines for the development of Nursing Information Systems. These guidelines were subsequently accepted by the Ministry of Health, and included in contract documents for the development of Health Information Systems in Portugal. We can even say that the Nursing Informatics did result, over the past two decades, in a small revolution in healthcare, enhancing Electronic Health Records. In fact, Health Informatics is now receiving more attention in Portugal.