Information flow between sectors supported by e-health

Student thesis: Master programme thesis

  • Gunnvá Guttesen
  • Hervør Eyðinsdóttir
2 year, Master of Health Informatics (Continuing education) (Continuing Education Programme (Master))
Intersectoral communication in the health sector is facing challenges worldwide.
The point of departure of this study is to look at communication and information flow between two different sectors and how e-health can be of support in this process.
The study sets out to examine how information-sharing is carried out today and what factors might have an influence on the communication. The field of study is "Nærverkid", (the home care) in the primary health care and the Faroese National Hospital.
The study is based on cases applying both quantitative and qualitative methods to accumulate knowledge about the field of study. Management staffs from both sectors have been interviewed as well as nurses working in discharge/reception units. Record audit which is characterized as a quantitative method has been used based on the interviews in the hospital, and in terms of documentation in templates and forms. Jens Müller's concept of technology has been used as theoretical frame of reference.
Findings from interview analysis and record audit provide evidence that there in the communication and information-sharing process remain uncertainties. This is regarding documentation as well as in the discharge process. There are inconsistencies in the observations between the sectors regarding the same subject. The means of communication is different as there are no common guidelines. Moreover, both sectors want to focus on communication in order to enhance the continuity of care. When discharging patients from the hospital the same procedure from before the implementation of e-health is used and the documentation between the sectors has not changed. A grey area emerges in the shift between sectors in which the division of responsibility is unclear.
According to Faroese digitization strategy the health service must be collaborative, with one memory - one e-health system.
Recommendations how to optimize the information flow: Implementation of e-health system in the primary health care focusing on "the gray area". This can be achieved by involving professionals from both sectors in the implementation process.
Publication date3 May 2012
Number of pages105
ID: 62909976