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Quantifying the impact of health IT implementations on clinical workflow: a new methodological perspective.

TitleQuantifying the impact of health IT implementations on clinical workflow: a new methodological perspective.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsZheng, K, Haftel, HM, Hirschl, RB, O'Reilly, M, Hanauer, DA
JournalJ Am Med Inform Assoc
Date Published2010 Jul-Aug
KeywordsComputer Graphics, Decision Support Systems, Management, Female, Health Plan Implementation, Humans, Intensive Care Units, Pediatric, Male, Medical Order Entry Systems, Michigan, Pattern Recognition, Automated, Time and Motion Studies, Workflow

Health IT implementations often introduce radical changes to clinical work processes and workflow. Prior research investigating this effect has shown conflicting results. Recent time and motion studies have consistently found that this impact is negligible; whereas qualitative studies have repeatedly revealed negative end-user perceptions suggesting decreased efficiency and disrupted workflow. We speculate that this discrepancy may be due in part to the design of the time and motion studies, which is focused on measuring clinicians' 'time expenditures' among different clinical activities rather than inspecting clinical 'workflow' from the true 'flow of the work' perspective. In this paper, we present a set of new analytical methods consisting of workflow fragmentation assessments, pattern recognition, and data visualization, which are accordingly designed to uncover hidden regularities embedded in the flow of the work. Through an empirical study, we demonstrate the potential value of these new methods in enriching workflow analysis in clinical settings.

Alternate JournalJ Am Med Inform Assoc
PubMed ID20595314
PubMed Central IDPMC2995654
Grant ListUL1RR024986 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
David Hanauer
University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center at North Campus Reserach Complex
1600 Huron Parkway, Bldg 100, Rm 100 
Mailing Address: 2800 Plymouth Rd, NCRC 100-1004
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2800 
Ph. (734) 764-8848 Fax. (734) 615-0517
Please acknowledge the Cancer Center Support Grant (P30 CA046592) when publishing manuscripts or abstracts that utilized the services of the University of Michigan's Comprehensive Cancer Center's Shared Resource: Cancer Informatics.
Suggested language: "Research reported in this [publication/press release] was supported by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health under award number P30CA046592."

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