Towards Knowledge Management for Healthcare: Effects of Latest Medical Information for the Quality of Healthcare in the Developing Countries: A Case Study
Keywords:KM-Knowledge Management, HI-Healthcare Institute, MP-Medical Practitioner, KMS-Knowledge Management System, HC-Health Care, KW-Knowledge,
In the last 2 decades, the Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) revolution has redefined the structure of the 21st century healthcare organizations. It is clear that the 21st century healthcare organizations in developing countries will bring new healthcare services and the traditional management & technological concepts would not be the appropriate conduit for disseminating these new healthcare services.
The fundamental challenge faced by the 21st century clinical practitioner in a developing country is to acquire proficiency in understanding and interpreting clinical information so as to update knowledge that leverages the quality of decisions made at the clinics. An additional challenge must be considered by the clinical practitioners to make potentially life-saving decisions whilst attempting to deal with large amounts of clinical data & Information. Since the Clinical Knowledge Management Systems (CKMS) consist of most related Data, Information and Knowledge, it could be utilized to achieve the above challenges.
According to the current economies, developing countries cannot afford to buy CKMS which needs a proper IT backbone and knowledge culture to run it. Medical practitioners (MPs) currently have no proper facilities to access the latest medical Information resources to make effective clinical diagnosis. Shortage of medical experts and MPs in Healthcare Institutions located in rural and remote areas in developing countries are also a massive problem which affects the quality of healthcare badly. By implementing and providing proper facilities for MPs to access KMS, this problem can be alleviated substantially.
The objective of this paper is to investigate the importance of the latest medical Information for making quality clinical decisions which improves the quality of healthcare. Findings of the research have shown that there is a strong linkage between accessing and using latest Information/knowledge in clinical activities and the quality of healthcare.
This research used a case study methodology for achieving the research objectives. Rural and remote areas in Sri Lanka were used for the case study, since Sri Lanka is one of the developing countries situated in the Asian region. As the first step of a solution to the Information problem, a KM framework for Healthcare Institutions to create Knowledge Management Systems was introduced.
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