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Title:The Role of iSchools in Medical Informatics
Author(s):Haque, Saira Naim; Østerlund, Carsten; Reddy, Madhu C.
Subject(s):health informatics
Abstract:Similar to iSchools, healthcare is an interdisciplinary field that encompasses heterogeneous environments (e.g., hospitals, clinics, home) and perspectives. However, medical informatics research focuses mainly on technical solutions to narrow problems. Often, this leads to the design of systems that solve one problem but do not fit the general work practices in a setting. In response, there is a growing movement in the community to start investigating organizational and social issues that impact the design, implementation, and use of information technologies (Reddy and Bradner 2005; Kaplan and Shaw 2004). This trend will only increase as healthcare documentation in the US increasingly moves from paper-based to electronic systems. iSchools are uniquely positioned to benefit the medical informatics community due to our interdisciplinary foundation. Taking the theoretical paradigms and methods from various fields will allow us to address the interplay between people, healthcare technologies, and healthcare organizations. Some areas could include: • Design and evaluation mechanisms to account for the ways different stakeholders interact with systems. • Workflow analysis to understand how information is used for various activities in preparation for a systems implementation. • Developing and implementing systems that deliver the right information to the right people at the right time. iSchool research can also help expand the focus of the medical informatics community to examine other important issues such as the digital divide in healthcare and protecting patient privacy. By working together, the iSchools can train the next generation of researchers providing needed interdisciplinary insight into medical informatics issues and extend into new territories. Healthcare is characterized by multiple stakeholders and teams that are separated by time and space that are information-dependent; therefore, iSchool research in this field can also impact research in related areas. Besides being a rich setting for conducting research, healthcare impacts our lives on a daily basis. The hosts of the roundtable will discuss how iSchools can get involved to incorporate more interdisciplinary research in the medical informatics area. In particular, we will focus on the following questions: 1. What are the interesting medical informatics research problems from an iSchool perspective? 2. How can iSchool research impact the medical informatics field? 3. What are the challenges iSchools face in this field?
Issue Date:2010-02-28
Genre:Conference Paper / Presentation
Date Available in IDEALS:2010-03-16

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