Development and Evaluation of Sociotechnical Metrics To Inform Health IT Adaptation (Missouri)

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The United States has undergone a rapid adoption of health information technology (IT). Adopting new technology requires the redesign of individual and collective workflows and results in changes in both organizational structure and processes. Historically, adoption of health IT, such as electronic health records (EHRs), has been evaluated using adoption rates, acceptance, and clinical quality measures. Although these measures are helpful to assess the maturity of implementation, they do not inform organizational or human factors that could delay or cause the goals of health IT to fail. Because implementation is a process and not an outcome, adoption can be assessed through the understanding of the progress of adaptation from a sociotechnical perspective. Sociotechnical theory explains the interdependent relationship between humans, organizations, and technology. The organizational and human (socio) elements and information technology elements (technical) are interdependent parts of a system that must be evaluated together and should not be studied in isolation.

This project will study health IT adaptation using sociotechnical theory as its foundational theoretical guidance. Measures will be identified and instruments created to evaluate the progress and status of adaptation. A mixed methods evaluation will be done, utilizing both quantitative and qualitative data.

The specific aims of this project are as follows:

  • Identify measures and develop instruments to evaluate the progress of Health IT adaptation 
  • Validate measures 

The instrument development and validation process will align to the National Institutes of Health PROMIS® (Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System) methodological specification, a nine-step standard considered best practice for instrument development and validation. Upon completion, this project will offer an innovative approach and demonstrate the use of sociotechnical theory to evaluate and accelerate the progress of health IT adaptation, essential for ongoing EHR optimization in the health care environment.

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