The research reported here reflects interim results of a longitudinal study.  It involved surveys and interviews across six hospitals.  In all the hospitals, surveys were distributed to all staff before and after a major rollout of the system.  The survey asked for users’ perceptions of the system and its impact.  Response rates were low but responses were obtained from most major work-streams.  Sample sizes per site ranged from 443 to 93.  The survey data was examined for users’ sentiment (i.e., positive or negative perceptions) towards the system. 

At all six sites, responses were mostly positive, though only moderately.  Average scores on a 7-point scale for key perceptions ranged from 4.1-5.6 out of 7, although there was variation among professional groups and units.  In addition to surveys, interviews were undertaken at each site before and after the major rollouts.  A detailed set of interviews was conducted at the Princess Alexandra Hospital (with over 100 staff members), with smaller numbers seen at other hospitals (15-20 staff members per site).  These interviews were conducted to obtain a deeper understanding of the impacts of the system. 

The research is still continuing at multiple sites and the findings may change as the research continues.  The researchers will be examining differences among units, professions, and hospitals.  For instance, the data to date suggests that doctors tend to have a lower perception of the system compared to allied health clinicians. 

The researchers will also be examining differences across time, because the data to date suggest that negative perceptions at a point in time can still be coupled with optimism about the future, and because perceptions can depend on the level of support available for the system at a point in time.  These and other questions will be examined as the research continues.   The research has been supported by Metro South Health. 

Find out more about UQ Business School's future of health research.