Barriers to use of information and computer technology by Australia's nurses: a national survey

Eley, Robert and Fallon, Anthony Bruce and Soar, Jeffrey ORCID: and Buikstra, Elizabeth and Hegney, Desley (2009) Barriers to use of information and computer technology by Australia's nurses: a national survey. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 18 (8). pp. 1151-1158. ISSN 0962-1067


Aims and objectives: To support policy planning for health, the barriers to the use of information and computer technology by nurses in Australia were determined.

Background: Australia, in line with many countries, aims to achieve a better quality of care and health outcomes through effective and innovative use of health information. Nurses form the largest component of the health workforce. Successful adoption by nurses of information and computer technology will be a requirement for success. No national study has been undertaken to determine the barriers to adoption.

Design: A self-administered postal survey. A questionnaire was distributed to 10,000 members of the Australian Nursing Federation. Twenty possible barriers to information and computer technology uptake were offered and responses were given on a five-point Likert scale.

Results: Work demands, access to computers and lack of support were the principal barriers faced by nurses to their adoption of the technology in the workplace. Factors that were considered to present few barriers included age and lack of interest. Whilst age was not considered by the respondents to be a barrier, their age was positively correlated with several barriers including knowledge and confidence in use of computers.

Conclusions: Results indicate that to use the information and computer technologies being brought into health care fully, barriers that prevent the principal users from embracing those technologies must be addressed. Factors such as the age of the nurse and their level of job must be considered when developing strategies to overcome barriers.

Relevance to clinical practice: The findings of this study provide essential information not only for national government and state health departments but also for local administrators and managers to enable clinical nurses to meet present and future job requirements.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Author version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Copyright 2009 Blackwell Publishing. This is an electronic version of an article published in Journal of Clinical Nursing, v. 18, no. 8, pp 1151-1158 as published in the print edition of the Journal. The published version is available via Blackwell's Synergy. Print ISSN 0962-1067.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Nursing (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Nursing (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2008 05:06
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2014 01:35
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australia; nurses; computers; information technology; barriers
Fields of Research (2008): 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0806 Information Systems > 080602 Computer-Human Interaction
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111711 Health Information Systems (incl. Surveillance)
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1110 Nursing > 111099 Nursing not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4608 Human-centred computing > 460806 Human-computer interaction
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4203 Health services and systems > 420399 Health services and systems not elsewhere classified
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4205 Nursing > 420599 Nursing not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
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