Resources for disease state management- what do health professionals want?

Stehlik, Paulina; Dārziņš, Pēteris; Marriott, Jennifer L.
July 2014
Electronic Journal of Health Informatics;Jul2014, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p1
Academic Journal
Objectives: Many medication management resources aim to improve the quality of prescribing, but simple resources naively do not address potential interactions when there are many diseases and many medications, while complex ones seem impractical to use during consultations. Limited work has explored health professional preferences regarding information resources for complex patients. This study aimed to explore the requirements for an information resource that HPs can use to assist in disease state management that takes into account all complexities of patient care, or at the very least, old age and multi-morbidity. Methods: Purposive convenience sampling was used to recruit geriatricians, general practitioners and accredited pharmacists for one hour, individual, semi-structured interviews through August 2011 to April 2012. Recruitment continued until data saturation. Nine geriatricians, one GP and five accredited pharmacists from the Melbourne metropolitan area were interviewed. Thematic analysis was conducted using NVivo9 software. Results: Study participants reported current resources do not assist with complex patient prescribing and lack relevance to the Australian setting. Difficulty in timely access to appropriate information and with contextualising vast amounts of new health information were identified hurdles in healthcare delivery, as were incomplete health care records. Key features which make resources useful include clear formatting, simplicity, use of peer-reviewed evidence-based recommendations, and ready access via an easy to use electronic interface. Conclusion: Current resources do not meet health professionals' needs when they seek practical assistance when prescribing to complex patients. Future resources need to address identified hurdles to providing optimal care and incorporate desired features.


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