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EHCOM — Ensuring sustainable e-health transformation in primary health care through competent full-time workers

The aim of the project is to investigate the relationships between digital technology, workplace learning and professional practice in community health- and care services. How is digitalisation influencing the everyday life and practice of health professionals, their managers, and patients? And how can 'praxis-near' learning be ensured that warrants quality, efficiency and safety in the services – as seen from both healthcare professionals' and patients' point of view?

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The digitalisation of the healthcare services transforms work-processes, team dynamics and responsibilities, communication, safety routines, and the way professionals collaborate with other services and users of services. The successful implementation of new technology in the healthcare services requires sufficient training, organisational support and provision of education that considers the competencies and the work context of the healthcare professional.

A significantly large share of the employees in community health services in Norway works part-time. Employees working only a few hours each week have meagre opportunities for learning and implementing new practices into their work routines due to lack of time, high work pressure, irregular workhours, and longer periods away from work. How does this influence on their technological skills and motivation and opportunities to learn? How can work-place training and education be provided that ensure all employees the necessary skills and competency needed to produce safe, high quality and efficient services for all involved? And how do municipalities combine these efforts with ensuring a higher share of full-time employees?

EHCOM investigates the digitalisation of community healthcare services and the municipalities' efforts to ensure meaningful implementation of digital technologies and sufficient digital skills among employees. The project's multidisciplinary research group from SINTEF Digital and NTNU conducts research in close collaboration with mangers, healthcare professionals and citizens from the municipalities Malvik, Levanger, Hitra and Verdal. The County Governor of Trøndelag and KS Trøndelag (the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities – KS) are also involved in the project. EHCOM combines perspectives and methods from social science, health economics and health services research.

Key Factors

Project duration

2021 - 2025

Financing

The Research Council of Norway

Cooperation Partners

NTNU and the municipalities Malvik, Hitra, Verdal, and Levanger,
The Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS), County Governor of Trøndelag

Project Type

Collaborative and Knowledge-building Project (KS)