Evaluating health information technology in community-based settings: Lessons learned

Department of Public Health, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York 10065, USA.
Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (Impact Factor: 3.5). 07/2011; 18(6):749-53. DOI: 10.1136/amiajnl-2011-000249
Source: PubMed


Implementing health information technology (IT) at the community level is a national priority to help improve healthcare quality, safety, and efficiency. However, community-based organizations implementing health IT may not have expertise in evaluation. This study describes lessons learned from experience as a multi-institutional academic collaborative established to provide independent evaluation of community-based health IT initiatives. The authors' experience derived from adapting the principles of community-based participatory research to the field of health IT. To assist other researchers, the lessons learned under four themes are presented: (A) the structure of the partnership between academic investigators and the community; (B) communication issues; (C) the relationship between implementation timing and evaluation studies; and (D) study methodology. These lessons represent practical recommendations for researchers interested in pursuing similar collaborations.

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