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Implementing EMRs: Learnings from a video ethnography

Authors

  • ERIK VINKHUYZEN,

    1. [paper] (erik.vinkhuyzen@parc.com) is a senior researcher at the PARC and specializes in video-ethnography of work to study how people organize their work and workplace, how they coordinate their work by means of formal and informal communication, the effects of the physical environment on work, the role of technology in the accomplishment of work, and how an organization's (sub)culture affects people's work.
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  • LUKE PLURKOWSKI,

    1. [paper] considers himself an “interaction analyst,” with wide-ranging expertise in sociology, ethnomethodology, conversation analysis, ethnography, video analysis, and a bit of quantitative analytic skill for good measure.
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  • GARY DAVID

    1. [paper] (gdavid@bentley.edu) is Associate Professor of Sociology at Bentley University.
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Abstract

This yearlong video ethnography of a healthcare clinic that transitioned from a paper process to a scanning solution documents in detail how the new technology impacted different groups in the clinic. While the scanning solution reduced the retrieving, filing, and paper-processing work for the Medical Record clerks, the ethnographic analysis showed that it also eliminated some of that work's tangible benefits for providers. Ultimately, the scanning solution resulted in a shift in the division of labor in the clinic from Medical Records to the healthcare providers who were burdened with additional administrative tasks. Indeed, the scanning technology did not make the clinic more efficient overall, as the number of patient visits per day remained the same.

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