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Table 1 Recommendations for implementing technology into healthcare organisations

From: The impact of electronic records on patient safety: a qualitative study

Engagement of front line staff and feedback Hospitals should not underestimate and should acknowledge the potential risks by providing regular opportunities for front line staff to voice their concerns. Trusts should also work closely with clinicians to increase their vigilance and preparedness for potential errors in the early phases of implementation.
Technology and hardware Prior to introducing systems, hospitals should ensure that sufficient hardware is placed in appropriate locations to prevent delays to clinics and risks in emergency situations.
Where technologically and financially possible, mobile devices or computers on wheels may help to alleviate situations where staff are choosing between accessing information and staying with acutely unwell patients.
During system down times or failures, back up or well communicated procedures and policies should be incorporated and understood by all staff. For instance, if paper is to be reverted to then it should be a mandatory requirement that any information recorded on paper during these periods should then be inserted onto the system once it is ‘up and running’ to prevent important information from being lost or missed in future.
Training and support Training should be provided on an on-going basis so that those finding using the system difficult can gain extra support with basic IT training sessions advisable. IT support teams should be available 24/7 to reflect the 24/7 provision of clinical care in hospitals. To ensure that those with poor computer literacy are supported, basic IT training, including typing skills should be made available, particularly during initial implementation. Hospitals should also be responsible for ensuring that all staff are computer literate.