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Title: Cross disciplinary evaluation framework for e-health services
Author: Alalwany, Hamid
ISNI:       0000 0004 2679 6553
Awarding Body: Brunel University
Current Institution: Brunel University
Date of Award: 2010
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E-health is an emerging field in the intersection of information systems, healthcare and business management, referring mainly to healthcare services delivered and enhanced through the use of information and communication technologies (ICT). In a broader sense, the term characterizes not only a technical development, but also a wider way of thinking, an attitude, and a commitment for a network to improve and connect provider, patients and governments. Such a network will be used to educate and inform healthcare professionals, managers and healthcare users; to stimulate innovation in care delivery and health system management; and to improve the healthcare system locally, regionally, and globally. The evaluation of e-health services in both theory and practice has proved to be important and complex. E-health evaluation will help achieve better user services utilization, justify the enormous investments of governments on delivering e-health services, and address the aspects that are hampering healthcare services from embracing the full potential of ICT towards successful e-health initiatives. The complexity of evaluation is mostly due to the challenges faced at the intersection of three areas, each well-known for its complexity; healthcare services, information systems, and evaluation methodologies. However, despite the importance of the evaluation of e-health services, literature shows that e-health evaluation is still in its infancy in terms of development and management. The aim of this research study is to develop, and assess a cross disciplinary evaluation framework for e-health services and to propose evaluation criteria for better user’s utilization and satisfaction of e-health services. The evaluation framework is criteria based, while the criteria are determined by an evaluation matrix of three elements, the evaluation rationales, the evaluation timeframes, and the evaluation stakeholders. The evaluation criteria have to be multi-dimensional as well as grounded in, or derived from, one or more specific perspectives or theories. The framework is designed to deal effectively with the challenges of e-health evaluation and overcome the limitation of existing evaluation frameworks. The cross disciplinary evaluation framework has been examined and validated by adopting an interpretive case study methodology. The chosen case study is NHS direct which is currently one of the largest e-health services in the world. The data collection process has been carried out by using three research methods; archival records, documentation analysis and semi-structured interviews. The use of multiple methods is essential to generate comparable data patterns and structures, and enhance the reliability of conclusions through data triangulation. The contribution of the research study is in bridging the gap between the theory and practice in the evaluation of e-health services by providing an efficient evaluation framework that can be applied to a wide range of e-health application and able to answer real-world concerns. The study also offers three sets of well-argued and balanced hierarchies of evaluation criteria that influence user’s utilization and satisfaction of e-health services. The evaluation criteria can be used to help achieve better user services utilization, to serve as part of e-health evaluation framework, and to address areas that require further attention in the development of future e-health initiatives.
Supervisor: Al Shawi, S. ; Irani, Z. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Evaluation rationale ; Evaluation timeframe ; Evaluation stakeholders ; Evaluation criteria ; User's perspective