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Georgia Institute of Technology
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HCI Evaluation of Medication Use and Management Health Information Technologies for Use in Pediatric Care

Medication-based errors have become a paramount issue in healthcare, especially pediatric care. In the United States each year, these largely preventable errors result in thousands of deaths, more injuries and complications, and added cost. As a result, there has been considerable interest in health information technologies (HITs) designed for medication management practices. However, many of these systems have failed in practice, which can be attributed to these systems not being appropriately designed to support users performing their normal work in their actual working environment.

These issues represent a primary focus of research in human-computer interaction (HCI), which recognizes the importance of considering all facets of interaction between human users and IT systems. In collaboration with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (CHOA) and the Epic Systems Corporation, this research aimed to examine user-, device- and context-based factors that affect user interaction with traditional and mobile computing technologies while performing medication management tasks in pediatric care. This dissertation research proposed a two phase study that will involved 50 non-clinical (e.g., student) participants in a controlled laboratory environment and 50 clinical participants in a healthcare setting at CHOA performing fundamental interaction tasks (e.g., text entry) of medication management using well-established Epic HITs. A full factorial design (4x2x2) was used to explore the impact of changes in hardware platform, lighting conditions, and time pressure on measures of user interaction and task performance. The results of this study served as a foundation of empirical evidence for the judicious design, development and implementation of HITs in large-scale pediatric hospitals, which will help ensure that these systems are usable and effective. This dissertation research fulfills both the research objectives and priority population initiatives of AHRQ/DHHS, as this study focused on improving medical errors/patient safety in pediatric care environments. The work provided theoretical contributions to HCI through advancing the knowledge of the effects of context and IT device platforms on human-system interaction in dynamic environments, as well as practical contributions to healthcare by providing a much needed perspective on the HCI needs for medication management HITs to help ensure the success of these clinical tools.

Committee Members:
Dr. Julie A. Jacko (GT ISyE)
Dr. François Sainfort (GT ISyE)
Dr. Ann F. Beach, MD (CHOA)
Robert K. Merritt (CHOA)
Dr. Brani Vidakovic (GT ISyE)

Principal Investigator: Kevin Moloney

Download link: A study of human-robot interaction with an assistive robot to help people with severe motor impairments

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