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1.  Comparison of user groups' perspectives of barriers and facilitators to implementing electronic health records: a systematic review 
BMC Medicine  2011;9:46.
Background
Electronic health record (EHR) implementation is currently underway in Canada, as in many other countries. These ambitious projects involve many stakeholders with unique perceptions of the implementation process. EHR users have an important role to play as they must integrate the EHR system into their work environments and use it in their everyday activities. Users hold valuable, first-hand knowledge of what can limit or contribute to the success of EHR implementation projects. A comprehensive synthesis of EHR users' perceptions is key to successful future implementation. This systematic literature review was aimed to synthesize current knowledge of the barriers and facilitators influencing shared EHR implementation among its various users.
Methods
Covering a period from 1999 to 2009, a literature search was conducted on nine electronic databases. Studies were included if they reported on users' perceived barriers and facilitators to shared EHR implementation, in healthcare settings comparable to Canada. Studies in all languages with an empirical study design were included. Quality and relevance of the studies were assessed. Four EHR user groups were targeted: physicians, other health care professionals, managers, and patients/public. Content analysis was performed independently by two authors using a validated extraction grid with pre-established categorization of barriers and facilitators for each group of EHR users.
Results
Of a total of 5,695 potentially relevant publications identified, 117 full text publications were obtained after screening titles and abstracts. After review of the full articles, 60 publications, corresponding to 52 studies, met the inclusion criteria. The most frequent adoption factors common to all user groups were design and technical concerns, ease of use, interoperability, privacy and security, costs, productivity, familiarity and ability with EHR, motivation to use EHR, patient and health professional interaction, and lack of time and workload. Each user group also identified factors specific to their professional and individual priorities.
Conclusions
This systematic review presents innovative research on the barriers and facilitators to EHR implementation. While important similarities between user groups are highlighted, differences between them demonstrate that each user group also has a unique perspective of the implementation process that should be taken into account.
doi:10.1186/1741-7015-9-46
PMCID: PMC3103434  PMID: 21524315
2.  Users' perspectives of barriers and facilitators to implementing EHR in Canada: A study protocol 
Background
In Canada, federal, provincial, and territorial governments are developing an ambitious project to implement an interoperable electronic health record (EHR). Benefits for patients, healthcare professionals, organizations, and the public in general are expected. However, adoption of an interoperable EHR remains an important issue because many previous EHR projects have failed due to the lack of integration into practices and organizations. Furthermore, perceptions of the EHR vary between end-user groups, adding to the complexity of implementing this technology. Our aim is to produce a comprehensive synthesis of actual knowledge on the barriers and facilitators influencing the adoption of an interoperable EHR among its various users and beneficiaries.
Methods
First, we will conduct a comprehensive review of the scientific literature and other published documentation on the barriers and facilitators to the implementation of the EHR. Standardized literature search and data extraction methods will be used. Studies' quality and relevance to inform decisions on EHR implementation will be assessed. For each group of EHR users identified, barriers and facilitators will be categorized and compiled using narrative synthesis and meta-analytical techniques. The principal factors identified for each group of EHR users will then be validated for its applicability to various Canadian contexts through a two-round Delphi study, involving representatives from each end-user groups. Continuous exchanges with decision makers and periodic knowledge transfer activities are planned to facilitate the dissemination and utilization of research results in policies regarding the implementation of EHR in the Canadian healthcare system.
Discussion
Given the imminence of an interoperable EHR in Canada, knowledge and evidence are urgently needed to prepare this major shift in our healthcare system and to oversee the factors that could affect its adoption and integration by all its potential users. This synthesis will be the first to systematically summarize the barriers and facilitators to EHR adoption perceived by different groups and to consider the local contexts in order to ensure the applicability of this knowledge to the particular realities of various Canadian jurisdictions. This comprehensive and rigorous strategy could be replicated in other settings.
doi:10.1186/1748-5908-4-20
PMCID: PMC2673204  PMID: 19358739
3.  Same organization, same electronic health records (EHRs) system, different use: exploring the linkage between practice member communication patterns and EHR use patterns in an ambulatory care setting 
Objective
Despite efforts made by ambulatory care organizations to standardize the use of electronic health records (EHRs), practices often incorporate these systems into their work differently from each other. One potential factor contributing to these differences is within-practice communication patterns. The authors explore the linkage between within-practice communication patterns and practice-level EHR use patterns.
Design
Qualitative study of six practices operating within the same multi-specialty ambulatory care organization using the same EHR system. Semistructured interviews and direct observation were conducted with all physicians, nurses, medical assistants, practice managers, and non-clinical staff from each practice.
Measurements
An existing model of practice relationships was used to analyze communication patterns within the practices. Practice-level EHR use was defined and analyzed as the ways in which a practice uses an EHR as a collective or a group—including the degree of feature use, level of EHR-enabled communication, and frequency that EHR use changes in a practice. Interview and observation data were analyzed for themes. Based on these themes, within-practice communication patterns were categorized as fragmented or cohesive, and practice-level EHR use patterns were categorized as heterogeneous or homogeneous. Practices where EHR use was uniformly high across all users were further categorized as having standardized EHR use. Communication patterns and EHR use patterns were compared across the six practices.
Results
Within-practice communication patterns were associated with practice-level EHR use patterns. In practices where communication patterns were fragmented, EHR use was heterogeneous. In practices where communication patterns were cohesive, EHR use was homogeneous. Additional analysis revealed that practices that had achieved standardized EHR use (uniformly high EHR use across all users) exhibited high levels of mindfulness and respectful interaction, whereas practices that were furthest from achieving standardized EHR use exhibited low levels of mindfulness and respectful interaction.
Conclusion
Within-practice communication patterns provide a unique perspective for exploring the issue of standardization in EHR use. A major fallacy of setting homogeneous EHR use as the goal for practice-level EHR use is that practices with uniformly low EHR use could be considered successful. Achieving uniformly high EHR use across all users in a practice is more consistent with the goals of current EHR adoption and use efforts. It was found that some communication patterns among practice members may enable more standardized EHR use than others. Understanding the linkage between communication patterns and EHR use can inform understanding of the human element in EHR use and may provide key lessons for the implementation of EHRs and other health information technologies.
doi:10.1136/amiajnl-2011-000263
PMCID: PMC3341779  PMID: 21846780
Electronic health record use; communication patterns; complex adaptive systems; practice-level EHR use patterns; EHR use standardization; organizational behavior; complexity science
4.  A Comparison of Physician Pre-Adoption and Adoption Views on Electronic Health Records in Canadian Medical Practices 
Background
There is a major campaign involving large expenditures of public money to increase the adoption rate of electronic health record (EHR) systems in Canada. To maximize the chances of success in this effort, physician views on EHRs must be addressed, since user perceptions are key to successful implementation of technology innovations.
Objective
We propose a theoretical model comprising behavioral factors either favoring or against EHR adoption and use in Canadian medical practices, from the physicians’ point of view. EHR perceptions of physicians already using EHR systems are compared with those not using one, through the lens of this model.
Methods
We conducted an online cross-sectional survey in both English and French among medical practitioners across Canada. Data were collected both from physicians using EHRs and those not using EHRs, and analyzed with structural equation modeling (SEM) techniques.
Results
We collected 119 responses from EHR users and 100 from nonusers, resulting in 2 valid samples of 102 and 83 participants, respectively. The theoretical adoption model explained 55.8% of the variance in behavioral intention to continue using EHRs for physicians already using them, and 66.8% of the variance in nonuser intention to adopt such systems. Perception of ease of use was found to be the strongest motivator for EHR users (total effect .525), while perceptions of usefulness and of ease of use were the key determinants for nonusers (total effect .538 and .519, respectively) to adopt the system. Users see perceived overall risk associated with EHR adoption as a major obstacle (total effect –.371), while nonusers perceive risk only as a weak indirect demotivator. Of the 13 paths of the SEM model, 5 showed significant differences between the 2 samples (at the .05 level): general doubts about using the system (P = .02), the necessity for the system to be relevant for their job (P < .001), and the necessity for the system to be useful (P = .049) are more important for EHR nonusers than for users, while perceptions of overall obstacles to adoption (P = .03) and system ease of use (P = .042) count more for EHR users than for nonusers.
Conclusions
Relatively few differences in perceptions about EHR system adoption and use exist between physicians already using such systems and those not yet using the systems. To maximize the chances of success for new EHR implementations from a behavioral point of view, general doubts about the rationale for such systems must be mitigated through improving design, stressing how EHRs are relevant to physician jobs, and providing substantiating evidence that EHRs are easier to use and more effective than nonusers might expect.
doi:10.2196/jmir.1726
PMCID: PMC3222163  PMID: 21840835
Electronic health record; information technology; medical practice; Canada
5.  Multi-level analysis of electronic health record adoption by health care professionals: A study protocol 
Background
The electronic health record (EHR) is an important application of information and communication technologies to the healthcare sector. EHR implementation is expected to produce benefits for patients, professionals, organisations, and the population as a whole. These benefits cannot be achieved without the adoption of EHR by healthcare professionals. Nevertheless, the influence of individual and organisational factors in determining EHR adoption is still unclear. This study aims to assess the unique contribution of individual and organisational factors on EHR adoption in healthcare settings, as well as possible interrelations between these factors.
Methods
A prospective study will be conducted. A stratified random sampling method will be used to select 50 healthcare organisations in the Quebec City Health Region (Canada). At the individual level, a sample of 15 to 30 health professionals will be chosen within each organisation depending on its size. A semi-structured questionnaire will be administered to two key informants in each organisation to collect organisational data. A composite adoption score of EHR adoption will be developed based on a Delphi process and will be used as the outcome variable. Twelve to eighteen months after the first contact, depending on the pace of EHR implementation, key informants and clinicians will be contacted once again to monitor the evolution of EHR adoption. A multilevel regression model will be applied to identify the organisational and individual determinants of EHR adoption in clinical settings. Alternative analytical models would be applied if necessary.
Results
The study will assess the contribution of organisational and individual factors, as well as their interactions, to the implementation of EHR in clinical settings.
Conclusions
These results will be very relevant for decision makers and managers who are facing the challenge of implementing EHR in the healthcare system. In addition, this research constitutes a major contribution to the field of knowledge transfer and implementation science.
doi:10.1186/1748-5908-5-30
PMCID: PMC2873301  PMID: 20416054
6.  Impact of Electronic Health Records on Malpractice Claims in a Sample of Physician Offices in Colorado: A Retrospective Cohort Study 
ABSTRACT
BACKGROUND
Electronic health records (EHRs) might reduce medical liability claims and potentially justify premium credits from liability insurers, but the evidence is limited.
OBJECTIVES
To evaluate the association between EHR use and medical liability claims in a population of office-based physicians, including claims that could potentially be directly prevented by features available in EHRs (“EHR-sensitive” claims).
DESIGN
Retrospective cohort study of medical liability claims and analysis of claim abstracts.
PARTICIPANTS
The 26 % of Colorado office-based physicians insured through COPIC Insurance Company who responded to a survey on EHR use (894 respondents out of 3,502 invitees).
MAIN MEASURES
Claims incidence rate ratio (IRR); prevalence of “EHR-sensitive” claims.
KEY RESULTS
473 physicians (53 % of respondents) used an office-based EHR. After adjustment for sex, birth cohort, specialty, practice setting and use of an EHR in settings other than an office, IRR for all claims was not significantly different between EHR users and non-users (0.88, 95 % CI 0.52–1.46; p = 0.61), or for users after EHR implementation as compared to before (0.73, 95 % CI 0.41–1.29; p = 0.28). Of 1,569 claim abstracts reviewed, 3 % were judged “Plausibly EHR-sensitive,” 82 % “Unlikely EHR-sensitive,” and 15 % “Unable to determine.” EHR-sensitive claims occurred in six out of 633 non-users and two out of 251 EHR users. Incidence rate ratios were 0.01 for both groups.
CONCLUSIONS
Colorado physicians using office-based EHRs did not have significantly different rates of liability claims than non-EHR users; nor were rates different for EHR users before and after EHR implementation. The lack of significant effect may be due to a low prevalence of EHR-sensitive claims. Further research on EHR use and medical liability across a larger population of physicians is warranted.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-012-2283-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s11606-012-2283-2
PMCID: PMC3631062  PMID: 23192449
electronic health records; professional liability; office-based practice
7.  Challenges to EHR Implementation in Electronic- Versus Paper-based Office Practices 
Summary
Background
Challenges in implementing electronic health records (EHRs) have received some attention, but less is known about the process of transitioning from legacy EHRs to newer systems.
Objective
To determine how ambulatory leaders differentiate implementation approaches between practices that are currently paper-based and those with a legacy EHR system (EHR-based).
Design
Qualitative study.
Participants
Eleven practice managers and 12 medical directors all part of an academic ambulatory care network of a large teaching hospital in New York City in January to May of 2006.
Approach
Qualitative approach comparing and contrasting perceived benefits and challenges in implementing an ambulatory EHR between practice leaders from paper- and EHR-based practices. Content analysis was performed using grounded theory and ATLAS.ti 5.0.
Results
We found that paper-based leaders prioritized the following: sufficient workstations and printers, a physician information technology (IT) champion at the practice, workflow education to ensure a successful transition to a paperless medical practice, and a high existing comfort level of practitioners and support staff with IT. In contrast, EHR-based leaders prioritized: improved technical training and ongoing technical support, sufficient protection of patient privacy, and open recognition of physician resistance, especially for those who were loyal to a legacy EHR. Unlike paper-based practices, EHR-based leadership believed that comfort level with IT and adjustments to workflow changes would not be difficult challenges to overcome.
Conclusions
Leadership at paper- and EHR-based practices in 1 academic network has different priorities for implementing a new EHR. Ambulatory practices upgrading their legacy EHR have unique challenges.
doi:10.1007/s11606-008-0573-5
PMCID: PMC2517887  PMID: 18369679
electronic health records (EHR); implementations; challenges; ambulatory
8.  Electronic Health Record (EHR) As a Vehicle for Successful Health Care Best Practice 
Medical Archives  2014;68(6):419-421.
Objective:
application of EHR in journey toward the development and adaptation of best practice approach in health care has particular importance. The aim of this review article is survey of successful best practice through EHR.
Methods:
In this literature review articles were searched with keywords like Electronic Health Record, Best Practice in Science Direct, Google Scholar and Pub Med databases since 1999.
Results:
best practice in health care through some services like utilization management, case management, and information technology tools can perform. Utilization management in combination with evidence based medicine facilitate determine best decision. Health records are based on evidence medicine and be the richest source of health information. Definitely use of EHR has play pivotal role in journey toward the development and adaptation of best practice approach.
Conclusion:
Because of potential capabilities, EHR can be regarded as a main core and fundamental element in best practice approach. Success implementation of EHR relies on many factors that should be considered. Some critical success factors for EHR implementation that should be noted are change management, Physicians, nurses and key stakeholders involvement, leadership, provide reliable information technology infrastructure, system design, privacy and security, right budget, support high level management, clear communicate, determine goals and user needs, and define roles and responsibilities, interoperability standards.
doi:10.5455/medarh.2014.68.419-421
PMCID: PMC4314170  PMID: 25648601
Electronic Health Record; EHR; Best Practice; Health Care
9.  Implementing electronic health records 
Canadian Family Physician  2008;54(5):730-736.
ABSTRACT
OBJECTIVE
To examine common themes about implementing and adopting electronic health record (EHR) systems that emerged from 3 separate studies of the experiences of primary health care providers and those who implement EHRs.
DESIGN
Synthesis of the findings of 3 qualitative studies.
SETTING
Primary health care practices in southwestern Ontario and the Centre for Studies in Family Medicine at The University of Western Ontario in London.
PARTICIPANTS
Family physicians, other primary health care providers, and the Deliver Primary Healthcare Information management and operations team.
METHOD
The findings of 3 separate qualitative studies exploring the implementation of EHRs were synthesized. In the 3 studies, investigators used semistructured interview guides to conduct one-on-one interviews and a focus group, which were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim, to collect information about participants’ experiences implementing and adopting EHRs. Transcripts were coded and analyzed by 1 or 2 investigators, and the research team met regularly for synthesis and interpretation of themes.
MAIN FINDINGS
Four common themes arose from the 3 studies: expectations of EHRs, time and training required to implement and adopt the software, the emergence of an EHR champion or problem solver, and the readiness of health care providers to accept the system.
CONCLUSION
Those considering implementing and adopting EHRs into a family practice environment should reflect on the following issues: their expectations of the system and what is needed to use the software, the level of commitment to EHR implementation and adoption, the availability of someone willing to take a leadership or champion role, and how much knowledge of computers potential EHR users have.
PMCID: PMC2377228  PMID: 18474707
10.  Patient and Public Views on Electronic Health Records and Their Uses in the United Kingdom: Cross-Sectional Survey 
Background
The development and implementation of electronic health records (EHRs) remains an international challenge. Better understanding of patient and public attitudes and the factors that influence overall levels of support toward EHRs is needed to inform policy.
Objective
To explore patient and public attitudes toward integrated EHRs used simultaneously for health care provision, planning and policy, and health research.
Methods
Cross-sectional questionnaire survey administered to patients and members of the public who were recruited from a stratified cluster random sample of 8 outpatient clinics of a major teaching hospital and 8 general practices in London (United Kingdom).
Results
5331 patients and members of the public responded to the survey, with 2857 providing complete data for the analysis presented here. There were moderately high levels of support for integrated EHRs used simultaneously for health care provision, planning and policy, and health research (1785/2857, 62.47%), while 27.93% (798/2857) of participants reported being undecided about whether or not they would support EHR use. There were higher levels of support for specific uses of EHRs. Most participants were in favor of EHRs for personal health care provision (2563/2857, 89.71%), with 66.75% (1907/2857) stating that they would prefer their complete, rather than limited, medical history to be included. Of those “undecided” about integrated EHRs, 87.2% (696/798) were nevertheless in favor of sharing their full (373/798, 46.7%) or limited (323/798, 40.5%) records for health provision purposes. There were similar high levels of support for use of EHRs in health services policy and planning (2274/2857, 79.59%) and research (2325/2857, 81.38%), although 59.75% (1707/2857) and 67.10% (1917/2857) of respondents respectively would prefer their personal identifiers to be removed. Multivariable analysis showed levels of overall support for EHRs decreasing with age. Respondents self-identifying as Black British were more likely to report being undecided or unsupportive of national EHRs. Frequent health services users were more likely to report being supportive than undecided.
Conclusions
Despite previous difficulties with National Health Service (NHS) technology projects, patients and the public generally support the development of integrated EHRs for health care provision, planning and policy, and health research. This support, however, varies between social groups and is not unqualified; relevant safeguards must be in place and patients should be guided in their decision-making process, including increased awareness about the benefits of EHRs for secondary uses.
doi:10.2196/jmir.2701
PMCID: PMC3758045  PMID: 23975239
electronic health records; patient attitudes; health care delivery; research; policy
11.  Variation in Electronic Health Record Adoption and Readiness for Meaningful Use: 2008–2011 
ABSTRACT
BACKGROUND
Federal initiatives are underway that provide physicians with financial incentives for meaningful use (MU) of electronic health records (EHRs) and assistance to purchase and implement EHRs.
OBJECTIVE
We sought to examine readiness and interest in MU among primary care physicians and specialists, and identify factors that may affect their readiness to obtain MU incentives.
DESIGN/PARTICIPANTS
We analyzed 4 years of data (2008–2011) from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS) Electronic Medical Record (EMR) Supplement, an annual cross-sectional nationally representative survey of non-federally employed office-based physicians.
MAIN MEASURES
Survey-weighted EHR adoption rates, potential to meet selected MU criteria, and self-reported intention to apply for MU incentives. We also examined the association between physician and practice characteristics and readiness for MU.
KEY RESULTS
The overall sample consisted of 10,889 respondents, with weighted response rates of 62 % (2008); 74 % (2009); 66 % (2010); and 61 % (2011). Primary care physicians’ adoption of EHRs with the potential to meet MU nearly doubled from 2009 to 2011 (18 % to 38 %, p < 0.01), and was significantly higher than specialists (19 %) in 2011 (p < 0.01). In 2011, half of physicians (52 %) expressed their intention to apply for MU incentives; this did not vary by specialty. Multivariate analyses report that EHR adoption was significantly higher in both 2010 and 2011 compared to 2009, and primary care physicians and physicians working in larger or multi-specialty practices or for HMOs were more likely to adopt EHRs with the potential to meet MU.
CONCLUSIONS
Physician EHR adoption rates increased in advance of MU incentive payments. Although interest in MU incentives did not vary by specialty, primary care physicians had significantly higher rates of adopting EHRs with the potential to meet MU. Addressing barriers to EHR adoption, which may vary by specialty, will be important to enhancing coordination of care.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-012-2324-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s11606-012-2324-x
PMCID: PMC3682025  PMID: 23371416
electronic health records; adoption; physician; primary care; meaningful use
12.  Understanding differences in electronic health record (EHR) use: linking individual physicians’ perceptions of uncertainty and EHR use patterns in ambulatory care 
Objective
Electronic health records (EHR) hold great promise for managing patient information in ways that improve healthcare delivery. Physicians differ, however, in their use of this health information technology (IT), and these differences are not well understood. The authors study the differences in individual physicians' EHR use patterns and identify perceptions of uncertainty as an important new variable in understanding EHR use.
Design
Qualitative study using semi-structured interviews and direct observation of physicians (n=28) working in a multispecialty outpatient care organization.
Measurements
We identified physicians' perceptions of uncertainty as an important variable in understanding differences in EHR use patterns. Drawing on theories from the medical and organizational literatures, we identified three categories of perceptions of uncertainty: reduction, absorption, and hybrid. We used an existing model of EHR use to categorize physician EHR use patterns as high, medium, and low based on degree of feature use, level of EHR-enabled communication, and frequency that EHR use patterns change.
Results
Physicians' perceptions of uncertainty were distinctly associated with their EHR use patterns. Uncertainty reductionists tended to exhibit high levels of EHR use, uncertainty absorbers tended to exhibit low levels of EHR use, and physicians demonstrating both perspectives of uncertainty (hybrids) tended to exhibit medium levels of EHR use.
Conclusions
We find evidence linking physicians' perceptions of uncertainty with EHR use patterns. Study findings have implications for health IT research, practice, and policy, particularly in terms of impacting health IT design and implementation efforts in ways that consider differences in physicians' perceptions of uncertainty.
doi:10.1136/amiajnl-2012-001377
PMCID: PMC3912724  PMID: 23698256
electronic health record use; physician perceptions of uncertainty; complexity science; uncertainty management; ambulatory care
13.  Adoption factors associated with electronic health record among long-term care facilities: a systematic review 
BMJ Open  2015;5(1):e006615.
Objectives
The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act created incentives for adopting electronic health records (EHRs) for some healthcare organisations, but long-term care (LTC) facilities are excluded from those incentives. There are realisable benefits of EHR adoption in LTC facilities; however, there is limited research about this topic. The purpose of this systematic literature review is to identify EHR adoption factors for LTC facilities that are ineligible for the HITECH Act incentives.
Setting
We conducted systematic searches of Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) Complete via Ebson B. Stephens Company (EBSCO Host), Google Scholar and the university library search engine to collect data about EHR adoption factors in LTC facilities since 2009.
Participants
Search results were filtered by date range, full text, English language and academic journals (n=22).
Interventions
Multiple members of the research team read each article to confirm applicability and study conclusions.
Primary and secondary outcome measures
Researchers identified common themes across the literature: specifically facilitators and barriers to adoption of the EHR in LTC.
Results
Results identify facilitators and barriers associated with EHR adoption in LTC facilities. The most common facilitators include access to information and error reduction. The most prevalent barriers include initial costs, user perceptions and implementation problems.
Conclusions
Similarities span the system selection phases and implementation process; of those, cost was the most common mentioned. These commonalities should help leaders in LTC facilities align strategic decisions to EHR adoption. This review may be useful for decision-makers attempting successful EHR adoption, policymakers trying to increase adoption rates without expanding incentives and vendors that produce EHRs.
doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006615
PMCID: PMC4316426  PMID: 25631311
HEALTH SERVICES ADMINISTRATION & MANAGEMENT
14.  Annual Survey on the Level and Extent of Usage of Electronic Health Records in Government-related Hospitals in Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia 
This study aims to determine the level and extent of usage of electronic health records (EHRs) in government-related hospitals in Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia. Another aim is to develop a Web site to serve as a forum of exchange on the development of EHRs in Saudi Arabia. All government hospitals (n = 19) in the province were included. The information technology (IT) managers in those hospitals made up the target population. An online questionnaire was developed, and the IT managers in all 19 government hospitals were invited to participate in the survey. The responses from the online survey were downloaded and analyzed using descriptive statistics. Of the 19 hospitals, only three (15.8 percent) use EHRs. These hospitals were established in 1984, 1995, and 2005. All three of these hospitals have implemented the same EHR software and were using it successfully, and all three were using the three core features of laboratory, radiology, and pharmacy electronic modules. Some modules were present in the EHR system but were underutilized. Some of the main challenges faced by the IT managers in implementing EHRs in their hospitals were related to the uncooperative attitudes of some physicians and nurses toward EHRs.
In fulfillment of the second aim of the study, a Web site, http://ehr2011.weebly.com, was developed to serve as a forum for exchange of information on the development of EHRs in Saudi Arabia. The government of Saudi Arabia has prioritized the development of eHealth (health information technology) and allocated committed funding for it during 2008–2011. During this period, some sectors of government made highly commendable efforts in developing eHealth services. Along these lines, we had hoped to see higher uptake of EHRs than the 15.8 percent found in this study. The rate of implementing EHRs in government hospitals should be accelerated. The aim should be on achieving some basic EHR functionality in these hospitals, and once this has been achieved, additional functionality can be pursued in stages.
PMCID: PMC3193507  PMID: 22016668
electronic health record; Saudi Arabia
15.  Patient Accessible Electronic Health Records: Exploring Recommendations for Successful Implementation Strategies 
Background
Providing patients with access to their electronic health records offers great promise to improve patient health and satisfaction with their care, as well to improve professional and organizational approaches to health care. Although many benefits have been identified, there are many questions about best practices for the implementation of patient accessible Electronic Health Records (EHRs).
Objectives
To develop recommendations to assist health care organizations in providing patients with access to EHRs in a meaningful, responsible, and responsive manner.
Methods
A Patient Accessible Electronic Health Record (PAEHR) Workshop was held with nationally and internationally renowned experts to explore issues related to providing patient access to the EHR and managing institutional change.
Results
The PAEHR Workshop was attended by 45 participants who discussed recommendations for the implementation of patient accessible EHRs. Recommendations were discussed under four subject domains: (1) providing patient access to the EHR, (2) maintaining privacy and confidentiality related to the PAEHR, (3) patient education and navigation of the PAEHR, and (4) strategies for managing institutional change. The discussion focused on the need for national infrastructure, clear definitions for privacy, security and confidentiality, flexible, interoperable solutions, and patient and professional education. In addition, there was a strong call for research into all domains of patient accessible EHRs to ensure the adoption of evidence-based practices.
Conclusions
Patient access to personal health information is a fundamental issue for patient engagement and empowerment. Health care professionals and organizations should consider the potential benefits and risks of patient access when developing EHR strategies. Flexible, standardized, and interoperable solutions must be integrated with outcomes-based research to activate effectively patients as partners in their health care.
doi:10.2196/jmir.1061
PMCID: PMC2629367  PMID: 18974036
Electronic Health Record (EHR); Personal Health Record (PHR); medical records; recommendations; health planning guidelines; access; access to information
16.  Factors Associated With Adoption of Health Information Technology: A Conceptual Model Based on a Systematic Review 
JMIR Medical Informatics  2014;2(1):e9.
Background
The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH) allocated $19.2 billion to incentivize adoption of the electronic health record (EHR). Since 2009, Meaningful Use Criteria have dominated information technology (IT) strategy. Health care organizations have struggled to meet expectations and avoid penalties to reimbursements from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Organizational theories attempt to explain factors that influence organizational change, and many theories address changes in organizational strategy. However, due to the complexities of the health care industry, existing organizational theories fall short of demonstrating association with significant health care IT implementations. There is no organizational theory for health care that identifies, groups, and analyzes both internal and external factors of influence for large health care IT implementations like adoption of the EHR.
Objective
The purpose of this systematic review is to identify a full-spectrum of both internal organizational and external environmental factors associated with the adoption of health information technology (HIT), specifically the EHR. The result is a conceptual model that is commensurate with the complexity of with the health care sector.
Methods
We performed a systematic literature search in PubMed (restricted to English), EBSCO Host, and Google Scholar for both empirical studies and theory-based writing from 1993-2013 that demonstrated association between influential factors and three modes of HIT: EHR, electronic medical record (EMR), and computerized provider order entry (CPOE). We also looked at published books on organizational theories. We made notes and noted trends on adoption factors. These factors were grouped as adoption factors associated with various versions of EHR adoption.
Results
The resulting conceptual model summarizes the diversity of independent variables (IVs) and dependent variables (DVs) used in articles, editorials, books, as well as quantitative and qualitative studies (n=83). As of 2009, only 16.30% (815/4999) of nonfederal, acute-care hospitals had adopted a fully interoperable EHR. From the 83 articles reviewed in this study, 16/83 (19%) identified internal organizational factors and 9/83 (11%) identified external environmental factors associated with adoption of the EHR, EMR, or CPOE. The conceptual model for EHR adoption associates each variable with the work that identified it.
Conclusions
Commonalities exist in the literature for internal organizational and external environmental factors associated with the adoption of the EHR and/or CPOE. The conceptual model for EHR adoption associates internal and external factors, specific to the health care industry, associated with adoption of the EHR. It becomes apparent that these factors have some level of association, but the association is not consistently calculated individually or in combination. To better understand effective adoption strategies, empirical studies should be performed from this conceptual model to quantify the positive or negative effect of each factor.
doi:10.2196/medinform.3106
PMCID: PMC4288077  PMID: 25599673
electronic health record (EHR); electronic medical record (EMR); health information technology (HIT); medical information systems; computerized provider order entry (CPOE); adoption
17.  A Mobile App for Securely Capturing and Transferring Clinical Images to the Electronic Health Record: Description and Preliminary Usability Study 
JMIR mHealth and uHealth  2015;3(1):e1.
Background
Photographs are important tools to record, track, and communicate clinical findings. Mobile devices with high-resolution cameras are now ubiquitous, giving clinicians the opportunity to capture and share images from the bedside. However, secure and efficient ways to manage and share digital images are lacking.
Objective
The aim of this study is to describe the implementation of a secure application for capturing and storing clinical images in the electronic health record (EHR), and to describe initial user experiences.
Methods
We developed CliniCam, a secure Apple iOS (iPhone, iPad) application that allows for user authentication, patient selection, image capture, image annotation, and storage of images as a Portable Document Format (PDF) file in the EHR. We leveraged our organization’s enterprise service-oriented architecture to transmit the image file from CliniCam to our enterprise clinical data repository. There is no permanent storage of protected health information on the mobile device. CliniCam also required connection to our organization’s secure WiFi network. Resident physicians from emergency medicine, internal medicine, and dermatology used CliniCam in clinical practice for one month. They were then asked to complete a survey on their experience. We analyzed the survey results using descriptive statistics.
Results
Twenty-eight physicians participated and 19/28 (68%) completed the survey. Of the respondents who used CliniCam, 89% found it useful or very useful for clinical practice and easy to use, and wanted to continue using the app. Respondents provided constructive feedback on location of the photos in the EHR, preferring to have photos embedded in (or linked to) clinical notes instead of storing them as separate PDFs within the EHR. Some users experienced difficulty with WiFi connectivity which was addressed by enhancing CliniCam to check for connectivity on launch.
Conclusions
CliniCam was implemented successfully and found to be easy to use and useful for clinical practice. CliniCam is now available to all clinical users in our hospital, providing a secure and efficient way to capture clinical images and to insert them into the EHR. Future clinical image apps should more closely link clinical images and clinical documentation and consider enabling secure transmission over public WiFi or cellular networks.
doi:10.2196/mhealth.3481
PMCID: PMC4296096  PMID: 25565678
mobile phone; photographs; electronic health records; telemedicine
18.  Archetype-based conversion of EHR content models: pilot experience with a regional EHR system 
Background
Exchange of Electronic Health Record (EHR) data between systems from different suppliers is a major challenge. EHR communication based on archetype methodology has been developed by openEHR and CEN/ISO. The experience of using archetypes in deployed EHR systems is quite limited today. Currently deployed EHR systems with large user bases have their own proprietary way of representing clinical content using various models. This study was designed to investigate the feasibility of representing EHR content models from a regional EHR system as openEHR archetypes and inversely to convert archetypes to the proprietary format.
Methods
The openEHR EHR Reference Model (RM) and Archetype Model (AM) specifications were used. The template model of the Cambio COSMIC, a regional EHR product from Sweden, was analyzed and compared to the openEHR RM and AM. This study was focused on the convertibility of the EHR semantic models. A semantic mapping between the openEHR RM/AM and the COSMIC template model was produced and used as the basis for developing prototype software that performs automated bi-directional conversion between openEHR archetypes and COSMIC templates.
Results
Automated bi-directional conversion between openEHR archetype format and COSMIC template format has been achieved. Several archetypes from the openEHR Clinical Knowledge Repository have been imported into COSMIC, preserving most of the structural and terminology related constraints. COSMIC templates from a large regional installation were successfully converted into the openEHR archetype format. The conversion from the COSMIC templates into archetype format preserves nearly all structural and semantic definitions of the original content models. A strategy of gradually adding archetype support to legacy EHR systems was formulated in order to allow sharing of clinical content models defined using different formats.
Conclusion
The openEHR RM and AM are expressive enough to represent the existing clinical content models from the template based EHR system tested and legacy content models can automatically be converted to archetype format for sharing of knowledge. With some limitations, internationally available archetypes could be converted to the legacy EHR models. Archetype support can be added to legacy EHR systems in an incremental way allowing a migration path to interoperability based on standards.
doi:10.1186/1472-6947-9-33
PMCID: PMC2715396  PMID: 19570196
19.  Methods to identify, study and understand End-user participation in HIT development 
Background
Experience has shown that for new health-information-technology (HIT) to be suc-cessful clinicians must obtain positive clinical benefits as a result of its implementation and joint-ownership of the decisions made during the development process. A prerequisite for achieving both success criteria is real end-user-participation. Experience has also shown that further research into developing improved methods to collect more detailed information on social groups participating in HIT development is needed in order to support, facilitate and improve real end-user participation.
Methods
A case study of an EHR planning-process in a Danish county from October 2003 until April 2006 was conducted using process-analysis. Three social groups (physicians, IT-professionals and administrators) were identified and studied in the local, present perspective. In order to understand the interactions between the three groups, the national, historic perspective was included through a literature-study. Data were collected through observations, interviews, insight gathered from documents and relevant literature.
Results
In the local, present perspective, the administrator's strategy for the EHR planning process meant that there was no clinical workload-reduction. This was seen as one of the main barriers to the physicians to achieving real influence. In the national, historic perspective, physicians and administrators have had/have different perceptions of the purpose of the patient record and they have both struggled to influence this definition. To date, the administrators have won the battle. This explains the conditions made available for the physicians' participation in this case, which led to their role being reduced to that of clinical consultants - rather than real participants.
Conclusion
In HIT-development the interests of and the balance of power between the different social groups involved are decisive in determining whether or not the end-users become real participants in the development process. Real end-user-participation is essential for the successful outcome of the process. By combining and developing existing theories and methods, this paper presents an improved method to collect more detailed information on social groups participating in HIT-development and their interaction during the development. This allows HIT management to explore new avenues during the HIT development process in order to support, facilitate and improve real end-user participation.
doi:10.1186/1472-6947-11-57
PMCID: PMC3196903  PMID: 21955493
20.  Advice for Decision Makers Based on an Electronic Health Record Evaluation at a Program for All-inclusive Care for Elders Site 
Applied Clinical Informatics  2011;2(1):18-38.
Objective
Provide evidence-based advise to “Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly” (PACE) decision makers considering implementing an electronic health record (EHR) system, drawing on the results of a mixed methods study to examine: (1) the diffusion of an EHR among clinicians documenting direct patient care in a PACE day care site, (2) the impact of the use of the EHR on the satisfaction levels of clinicians, and (3) the impact of the use of the EHR on patient functional outcomes.
Methods
Embedded mixed methods design with a post-test design quantitative experiment and concurrent qualitative component. Quantitative methods included: (1) the EHR audit log used to determine the frequency and timing during the week of clinicians’ usage of the system; (2) a 22-item clinician satisfaction survey; and (3) a 16-item patient functional outcome questionnaire related to locomotion, mobility, personal hygiene, dressing, feeding as well the use of adaptive devices. Qualitative methods included observations and open-ended, semi-structured follow-up interviews. Qualitative data was merged with the quantitative data by comparing the findings along themes. The setting was a PACE utilizing an EHR in Philadelphia: PACE manages the care of nursing-home eligible members to enable them to avoid nursing home admission and reside in their homes. Participants were 39 clinicians on the multi-disciplinary teams caring for the elders and 338 PACE members.
Results
Clinicians did not use the system as intended, which may help to explain why the benefits related to clinical processes and patient outcomes as expected for an EHR were not reflected in the results. Clinicians were satisfied with the EHR, although there was a non-significant decline between 11 and 17 months post implementation of the EHR. There was no significant difference in patient functional outcome the two time periods. However, the sample size of 48 was too small to allow any conclusive statements to be made. Interpretation of findings underscores the importance of the interaction of workflow and EHR functionality and usability to impact clinician satisfaction, efficiency, and clinician use of the EHR.
Conclusion
This research provides insights into EHR use in the care of the older people in community-based health care settings. This study assessed the adoption of an EHR outside the acute hospital setting and in the community setting to provide evidence-based recommendations to PACE decision makers considering implementing an EHR.
doi:10.4338/ACI-2010-09-RA-0055
PMCID: PMC3631909  PMID: 23616858
Evaluation studies; technology evaluation; clinical information systems; patient care team; aged
21.  'To take care of the patients': Qualitative analysis of Veterans Health Administration personnel experiences with a clinical informatics system 
Background
The Veterans Health Administration (VA) has invested significant resources in designing and implementing a comprehensive electronic health record (EHR) that supports clinical priorities. EHRs in general have been difficult to implement, with unclear cost-effectiveness. We describe VA clinical personnel interactions with and evaluations of the EHR.
Methods
As part of an evaluation of a quality improvement initiative, we interviewed 72 VA clinicians and managers using a semi-structured interview format. We conducted a qualitative analysis of interview transcripts, examining themes relating to participants' interactions with and evaluations of the VA EHR.
Results
Participants described their perceptions of the positive and negative effects of the EHR on their clinical workflow. Although they appreciated the speed and ease of documentation that the EHR afforded, they were concerned about the time cost of using the technology and the technology's potential for detracting from interpersonal interactions.
Conclusions
VA personnel value EHRs' contributions to supporting communication, education, and documentation. However, participants are concerned about EHRs' potential interference with other important aspects of healthcare, such as time for clinical care and interpersonal communication with patients and colleagues. We propose that initial implementation of an EHR is one step in an iterative process of ongoing quality improvement.
doi:10.1186/1748-5908-5-63
PMCID: PMC2931450  PMID: 20727182
22.  Integration of a nationally procured electronic health record system into user work practices 
Background
Evidence suggests that many small- and medium-scale Electronic Health Record (EHR) implementations encounter problems, these often stemming from users' difficulties in accommodating the new technology into their work practices. There is the possibility that these challenges may be exacerbated in the context of the larger-scale, more standardised, implementation strategies now being pursued as part of major national modernisation initiatives. We sought to understand how England's centrally procured and delivered EHR software was integrated within the work practices of users in selected secondary and specialist care settings.
Methods
We conducted a qualitative longitudinal case study-based investigation drawing on sociotechnical theory in three purposefully selected sites implementing early functionality of a nationally procured EHR system. The complete dataset comprised semi-structured interview data from a total of 66 different participants, 38.5 hours of non-participant observation of use of the software in context, accompanying researcher field notes, and hospital documents (including project initiation and lessons learnt reports). Transcribed data were analysed thematically using a combination of deductive and inductive approaches, and drawing on NVivo8 software to facilitate coding.
Results
The nationally led "top-down" implementation and the associated focus on interoperability limited the opportunity to customise software to local needs. Lack of system usability led users to employ a range of workarounds unanticipated by management to compensate for the perceived shortcomings of the system. These had a number of knock-on effects relating to the nature of collaborative work, patterns of communication, the timeliness and availability of records (including paper) and the ability for hospital management to monitor organisational performance.
Conclusions
This work has highlighted the importance of addressing potentially adverse unintended consequences of workarounds associated with the introduction of EHRs. This can be achieved with customisation, which is inevitably somewhat restricted in the context of attempts to implement national solutions. The tensions and potential trade-offs between achieving large-scale interoperability and local requirements is likely to be the subject of continuous debate in England and beyond with no easy answers in sight.
doi:10.1186/1472-6947-12-15
PMCID: PMC3313868  PMID: 22400978
23.  Framework and components for effective discharge planning system: a delphi methodology 
Background
To reduce avoidable hospital readmissions, effective discharge planning and appropriate post discharge support care are key requirements. This study is a 3-staged process to develop, pretest and pilot a framework for an effective discharge planning system in Hong Kong. This paper reports on the methodology of Delphi approach and findings of the second stage on pre-testing the framework developed so as to validate and attest to its applicability and practicability in which consensus was sought on the key components of discharge planning.
Methods
Delphi methodology was adopted to engage a group of experienced healthcare professionals to rate and discuss the framework and components of an effective discharge planning. The framework was consisted 36 statements under 5 major themes: initial screening, discharge planning process, coordination of discharge, implementation of discharge, and post discharge follow-up. Each statement was rated independently based on 3 aspects including clarity, validity and applicability on a 5-point Likert-scale. Statement with 75% or above of participants scoring 4–5 on all 3 aspects would be included in the discharge planning framework. For those statements not reaching 75% of consensus in any one of the aspect, it would be revised or discarded following the group discussion, and be re-rated in another round.
Results
A total of 24 participants participated in the consensus-building process. In round one rating, consensus was achieved in 25 out of 36 statements. Among those 11 statements not reaching consensus, the major concern was related to the “applicability” of the statements. The participants expressed a lack of manpower, skills and time in particular during weekends and long holidays in carrying out assessment and care plans within 24 h after admission. There were also timeliness and availability issue in providing transportation and necessary equipment to the patients. To make the statements more applicable, the wordings of some of the statements were revised to provide greater flexibility. Due to the lack of a statement in clarifying the role of the members of the healthcare professional team, one additional statement on the role and responsibility of the multidisciplinary team members was added. The first theme on “initial screening” was further revised to “initial screening and assessment” to better reflect the first stage of discharge planning process. After two rounds of rating process, all the 36 statements and the newly added statement reached consensus
Conclusions
A structured, systematic and coordinated system of hospital discharge system is required to facilitate the discharge process to ensure a smooth patient transition from the hospital to the community and improve patient health outcome in both clinical and social aspect. The findings of this paper provide a reference framework helping policymakers and hospital managers to facilitate the development of a coherent and systematized discharge planning process. Adopting a Delphi approach also demonstrates the values of the method as a pre-test (before the clinical run) of the components and requirements of a discharge planning system taking into account of the local context and system constraints, which would lead to improvements to its applicability and practicability. To confirm the applicability and practicability of this consensus framework for discharge planning system, the third stage of process of development of the discharge planning framework is to apply and pilot the framework in a hospital setting to evaluate its feasibility, applicability and impact in hospital including satisfaction from both the perspectives of staff and patients.
doi:10.1186/1472-6963-12-396
PMCID: PMC3508885  PMID: 23151173
24.  Writing and reading in the electronic health record: an entirely new world 
Medical Education Online  2013;18:10.3402/meo.v18i0.18634.
Background
Electronic health records (EHRs) are structured, distributed documentation systems that differ from paper charts. These systems require skills not traditionally used to navigate a paper chart and to produce a written clinic note. Despite these differences, little attention has been given to physicians’ electronic health record (EHR)-writing and -reading competence.
Purposes
This study aims to investigate physicians’ self-assessed competence to document and to read EHR notes; writing and reading preferences in an EHR; and demographic characteristics associated with their perceived EHR ability and preference.
Methods
Fourteen 5-point Likert scale items, based on EHR system characteristics and a literature review, were developed to measure EHR-writing and -reading competence and preference. Physicians in the midwest region of the United States were invited via e-mail to complete the survey online from February to April 2011. Factor analysis and reliability testing were conducted to provide validity and reliability of the instrument. Correlation and regression analysis were conducted to pursue answers to the research questions.
Results
Ninety-one physicians (12.5%), from general and specialty fields, working in inpatient and outpatient settings, participated in the survey. Despite over 3 years of EHR experience, respondents perceived themselves to be incompetent in EHR writing and reading (Mean = 2.74, SD = 0.76). They preferred to read succinct, narrative notes in EHR systems. However, physicians with higher perceived EHR-writing and -reading competence had less preference toward reading succinct (r= − 0.33, p<0.001) and narrative (r= − 0.36, p<0.001) EHR notes than physicians with lower perceived EHR competence. Physicians’ perceived EHR-writing and - reading competence was strongly related to their EHR navigation skills (r=0.55, p<0.0001).
Conclusions
Writing and reading EHR documentation is different for physicians. Maximizing navigation skills can optimize non-linear EHR writing and reading. Pedagogical questions remain related to how physicians and medical students are able to retrieve correct information effectively and to understand thought patterns in collectively lengthier and sometimes fragmented EHR chart notes.
doi:10.3402/meo.v18i0.18634
PMCID: PMC3566375  PMID: 23394976
electronic health record (EHR); electronic medical record (EMR); reading; documentation; navigation
25.  Adoption of Electronic Health Records 
Applied Clinical Informatics  2011;2(2):165-176.
Objective
Less than 20% of hospitals in the US have an electronic health record (EHR). In this qualitative study, we examine the perspectives of both academic and private physicians and administrators as stakeholders, and their alignment, to explore their perspectives on the use of technology in the clinical environment.
Methods
Focus groups were conducted with 74 participants who were asked a series of open-ended questions. Grounded theory was used to analyze the transcribed data and build convergent themes. The relevance and importance of themes was constructed by examining frequency, convergence, and intensity. A model was proposed that represents the interactions between themes.
Results
Six major themes emerged, which include the impact of EHR systems on workflow, patient care, communication, research/outcomes/billing, education/learning, and institutional culture. Academic and private physicians were confident of the future benefits of EHR systems, yet cautious about the current implementations of EHR, and its impact on interactions with other members of the healthcare team and with patients, and the amount of time necessary to use EHR’s. Private physicians differed on education and were uneasy about the steep learning curve necessary for use of new systems. In contrast to physicians, university and hospital administrators are optimistic, and value the availability of data for use in reporting.
Conclusion
The results of our study indicate that both private and academic physicians concur on the need for features that maintain and enhance the relationship with the patient and the healthcare team. Resistance to adoption is related to insufficient functionality and its potential negative impact on patient care. Integration of data collection into clinical workflows must consider the unexpected costs of data acquisition.
doi:10.4338/ACI-2011-01-RA-0003
PMCID: PMC3631919  PMID: 23616868
Adoption; health information technology; workflow

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