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Aged care facility technology experts sought for research


A visiting US aged care technology expert is seeking input from CIOs and other aged care leaders with experience adopting health information technology in residential facilities to inform an international study.

Professor Greg Alexander from the University of Missouri is undertaking a comparative study of IT sophistication in residential aged care facilities across the US and Australia.

He is working with Professor Andrew Georgiou from the Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research at Macquarie University’s Australian Institute of Health Innovation, which is hosting his visit, on a research project funded by the Australian/American Fulbright Commission.

Professor Greg Alexander

“We are interested in looking at how technology is impacting quality in long-term care,” Professor Alexander told Australian Ageing Agenda.

The study is also investigating the links between IT sophistication and other areas such as staffing, ownership type and facility location, he said.

Professor Alexander is initially looking to recruit five to 10 aged care leaders in NSW in charge of or with knowledge of facility IT systems to assess a short survey he has used for a national study in the US in order to develop an Australian version.

“The survey assesses IT capabilities, extent of IT use and degree of internal and external IT integration in two healthcare domains including residential care and clinical support,” he said.

“I need to conduct interviews with knowledgeable aged care leaders who have experience with technology to assure the survey has proper language and is understandable to an Australian aged care leader audience.”

Professor Alexander is seeking input from people from a range of organisation types, facility sizes and locations.

He will use the feedback to revise the survey before sending it to all aged care facilities in NSW to get a measure of IT sophistication across the state.

The results will then be compared with the US study, which drew 800 responses, he said.

“In the US study, I have been looking at how trends in IT adoption are impacting quality measures, staffing, and other indicators,” Professor Alexander said.

People interested in participating in this initial stage should email Professor Greg Alexander at alexanderg@missouri.edu or Professor Andrew Georgiou at andrew.georgiou@mq.edu.au.

Want to have your say on this story? Comment below. Send us your news and tip-offs to editorial@australianageingagenda.com.au 

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