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An Evaluation of the Use of Smartphones to Communicate Between Clinicians: A Mixed-Methods Study

Posted by on August 29th, 2011 Posted in: Research Reads


A good example of mixed methods in this study, which combined quantitative measures of frequency of smartphone use and email messages with interviews and ethnographic observations. The semistructured interviews explored clinician’s perceptions of their smartphone experiences; participants were selected using a purposive sampling stratgy that chose from different groups of health care professionals with differing views on the use of smartphones for clinical communications. The observational methods included nonparticipatory “work-shadowing,” in which a researcher followed medical residents during day and evening shifts, plus observations at the general internal medicine nursing stations. Analysis of qualitative data resulted in five major themes: efficiency, interruptions, interprofessional relations, gaps in perceived urgency, and professionalism. The full article is available open access:

Wu, R, et al. An Evaluation of the Use of Smartphones to Communicate Between Clinicians: A Mixed-Methods Study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 2011, volume 13, Issue 3.

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Thoughts on "An Evaluation of the Use of Smartphones to Communicate Between Clinicians: A Mixed-Methods Study"

Alison says:

Thanks Susan! There are some really interesting findings about interprofessional relations and professionalism here that would have been missed or misinterpreted with a strictly quantitative study.

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