Title

INTEGRATING THEORIES FROM MEDICINE AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT) TO ANALYZE DIFFUSION OF ELECTRONIC MEDICAL RECORDS IN PRIMARY CARE

Abstract

The implications of the physician-patient relationship and communication on healthcare quality have been widely discussed in previous research. Communication has been characterized as one of the most powerful, encompassing, and versatile instruments available to the physician and it has been suggested that good physician-patient communication can improve healthcare outcomes.
The incorporation of Information Systems (IS) in healthcare and more specifically, the introduction of Electronic Medical Recordss (EMRs) in primary care provide an opportunity for improving healthcare services and quality of care. Healthcare IS has without a doubt transformed the dynamics of the medical encounter. Implications of EMRs on the physician-patient communication, and thus on healthcare quality have not yet reached a full understanding. In this paper we suggest that constructs from several relevant and important theoretical frameworks from the IS field should be applied in order to enhance understanding of the EMR's effect on the medical encounter. These theories include: Task-Technology Fit, Technology Acceptance, Technology to Performance Chain, Post Acceptance Model. Our thesis suggests that these theories and the constructs that they include can and should be applied in the field of healthcare IS because of the complexity entailed in the field of healthcare. As such, we suggest a theoretical model that aims to assist in basing a deeper understanding of the physician-patient relationship in a computerized environment.

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