Background / Aims: In 2009 HCC (HealthCare Community) was implemented as the shared electronic health record for mental health and addictions services across the Auckland region. The study aims included gaining an understanding of the impact of implementation of HCC at Counties Manukau Health, ascertaining whether the original anticipated benefits of the implementation had been met and identifying improvements that could inform current and future use of HCC.
Methods: Qualitative exploratory-descriptive research methodology was used to explore the experiences and views of CMH staff who use HCC. Non-probability purposive sampling was used to recruit participants who were most likely to contribute robust experiences both in terms of relevance and depth of knowledge. A total of 23 participants took part in the study; nine in semi-structured individual interviews and fourteen attended focus group interviews. Audio-recorded transcripts of interviews and focus groups were analysed using a general inductive approach and thematic analysis to identify, define and describe the seven major themes that emerged (Braun & Clarke, 2006).
Results: Findings uncovered complications encountered during the initial regional implementation process, the influence of management and leadership on uptake of HCC, challenges concerning computer literacy and staff training needs, risks associated with clinician behaviour and the impacts of change on staff at practice and emotional levels. Findings also revealed advantages for clinical practice, quality and reporting.
Conclusions: The study revealed substantial benefits in having greater access to clinical information and highlighted practical implications of the change management process. It provided insights into significant transformational changes that took place at a personal, practice, team and management level. Also evident was that challenges can be overcome with a planned, targeted, collaborative approach, involving leaders, managers, clinicians, trainers and consumer advisors. The study recommends considerations for practice, education, the organisation and for research. The success of a system such as HCC however is dependent on the behaviour and practice of the clinicians or (health professionals) who use it.
Counties Manukau Health