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J Med Syst. 2005 Oct;29(5):449-61.

Collaborative technology use by healthcare teams.

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  • 1School of Health Information Science, University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.


This paper reviews the literature on the use of collaborative technologies by healthcare teams between 1980 and 2003. Multiple databases were searched with explicit inclusion criteria that yielded 17 conceptual and empirical papers. The discussions of these literatures centered on the individual, team, and technological dimensions of collaborative technology use within healthcare teams. Results show that collaborative healthcare technologies can have positive effects on team work processes at both the individual and group level. The limited number of research studies accentuates the need for additional research in this area. Future research should focus on defining team tasks; determining which type of groupware works for a particular health setting; and exploring the effects of groupware on patient care delivery and the organization. Without research in these areas, it will be difficult to harness the full advantages of using groupware technologies by collaborative healthcare teams.

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