Health Care Staff’s Experiences of Engagement When Introducing a Digital Decision Support System for Wound Management: Qualitative Study

JMIR Hum Factors. 2020 Dec 9;7(4):e23188. doi: 10.2196/23188.


BACKGROUND: eHealth solutions such as digital decision support systems (DDSSs) have the potential to assist collaboration between health care staff to improve matters for specific patient groups. Patients with hard-to-heal ulcers have long healing times because of a lack of guidelines for structured diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up. Multidisciplinary collaboration in wound management teams is essential. A DDSS could offer a way of aiding improvement within wound management. The introduction of eHealth solutions into health care is complicated, and the engagement of the staff seems crucial. Factors influencing and affecting engagement need to be understood and considered for the introduction of a DDSS to succeed.

OBJECTIVE: This study aims to describe health care staff’s experiences of engagement and barriers to and influencers of engagement when introducing a DDSS for wound management.

METHODS: This study uses a qualitative approach. Interviews were conducted with 11 health care staff within primary (n=4), community (n=6), and specialist (n=1) care during the start-up of the introduction of a DDSS for wound management. The interviews focused on the staff’s experiences of engagement. Content analysis by Burnard was used in the data analysis process.

RESULTS: A total of 4 categories emerged describing the participants’ experiences of engagement: a personal liaison, a professional commitment, an extended togetherness, and an awareness and understanding of the circumstances.

CONCLUSIONS: This study identifies barriers to and influencers of engagement, reinforcing that staff experience engagement through feeling a personal liaison and a professional commitment to make things better for their patients. In addition, engagement is nourished by sharing with coworkers and by active support and understanding from leadership.

PMID:33295295 | DOI:10.2196/23188