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Crossing the quality chasm: the role of information technology departments.

Weir CR, Hicken BL, Rappaport HS, Nebeker JR. Crossing the quality chasm: the role of information technology departments. American journal of medical quality : the official journal of the American College of Medical Quality. 2006 Nov 1; 21(6):382-93.

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Integrating information technology (IT) into medical settings is considered essential to transforming hospitals into 21st-century health care institutions. Yet the role of IT departments in maximizing the effectiveness of information systems is not well understood. This article reports a 3-round Delphi panel of Veterans Administration personnel experienced with provider order entry electronic systems. In round 1, 35 administrative, clinical, and IT personnel answered 10 open-ended questions about IT strategies and structures that best support successful transformation. In round 2, panelists rated item importance and ranked proposed strategies. In round 3, panelists received aggregate feedback and rerated the items. Four domains emerged from round 1: IT organization, IT performance monitoring, user-support activities, and core IT responsibilities (eg, computer security, training). In rounds 2 and 3, IT performance monitoring was rated the most important, closely followed by clinical support. Strategies associated with each domain are identified and discussed.

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