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Development and validation of a scale to assess attitudes of health care administrators toward the use of e-mail communication between patients and physicians.
Res Social Adm Pharm. 2006 Dec; 2(4):512-32.RS

Abstract

BACKGROUND

The medical profession has been slow in embracing the e-mail as a means of improving patient communications. Today, most physicians work in group practices where administrators seek to develop standard procedures for care delivery. To understand the slow adoption of e-mail technology among physicians when communicating with their patients, it is important to understand these administrators' attitudes.

OBJECTIVE

The purpose of this study was to develop and purify a scale to measure health care administrators' attitudes toward the use of e-mail communication and identify associations between e-mail communication attitudes and administrators' demographic and practice-related characteristics.

METHODS

A preliminary list of features for e-mail communication was generated by reviewing the literature and Rogers' diffusion theory. The features were grouped initially into 5 hypothesized dimensions: relative advantage, norms (established rules of the social system), complexity, compatibility, and infrastructure. Following pilot testing, the main survey instrument was mailed to a total of 1500 health care administrators. Attitudes toward features of e-mail communication scale were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis with promax rotation. Internal consistency of the scale and its subscales was determined using Cronbach's alpha and item-total correlations.

RESULTS

The overall response rate was 8.7%. Scale purification procedures reduced the preliminary scale of 22 items to a final scale of 20 items. The reliability of the scale measured by Cronbach's alpha was 0.81. Norms was considered the major barrier to e-mail communication, whereas infrastructure was considered a facilitator, and other features like relative advantage, complexity, and compatibility issues were perceived more as a barrier than a facilitator. The item related to and usage of e-mail by staff was statistically significant with the overall scale score (P=0.0095), complexity subscale score (P=0.0168), and infrastructure subscale score (P=0.0480). The relationship between number of years of experience of the administrator and infrastructure subscale score was statistically significant (P=0.0480).

CONCLUSION

A scale developed to determine the attitudes of health care administrators regarding e-mail communication between patients and physicians demonstrated adequate content validity and reliability.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Pharmacy Practice, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2051, USA. menakabh@pharmacy.purdue.eduNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Validation Study

Language

eng

PubMed ID

17161809

Citation

Bhor, Menaka, and Holly L. Mason. "Development and Validation of a Scale to Assess Attitudes of Health Care Administrators Toward the Use of E-mail Communication Between Patients and Physicians." Research in Social & Administrative Pharmacy : RSAP, vol. 2, no. 4, 2006, pp. 512-32.
Bhor M, Mason HL. Development and validation of a scale to assess attitudes of health care administrators toward the use of e-mail communication between patients and physicians. Res Social Adm Pharm. 2006;2(4):512-32.
Bhor, M., & Mason, H. L. (2006). Development and validation of a scale to assess attitudes of health care administrators toward the use of e-mail communication between patients and physicians. Research in Social & Administrative Pharmacy : RSAP, 2(4), 512-32.
Bhor M, Mason HL. Development and Validation of a Scale to Assess Attitudes of Health Care Administrators Toward the Use of E-mail Communication Between Patients and Physicians. Res Social Adm Pharm. 2006;2(4):512-32. PubMed PMID: 17161809.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Development and validation of a scale to assess attitudes of health care administrators toward the use of e-mail communication between patients and physicians. AU - Bhor,Menaka, AU - Mason,Holly L, PY - 2005/08/01/received PY - 2006/02/15/revised PY - 2006/02/15/accepted PY - 2006/12/13/pubmed PY - 2007/3/16/medline PY - 2006/12/13/entrez SP - 512 EP - 32 JF - Research in social & administrative pharmacy : RSAP JO - Res Social Adm Pharm VL - 2 IS - 4 N2 - BACKGROUND: The medical profession has been slow in embracing the e-mail as a means of improving patient communications. Today, most physicians work in group practices where administrators seek to develop standard procedures for care delivery. To understand the slow adoption of e-mail technology among physicians when communicating with their patients, it is important to understand these administrators' attitudes. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to develop and purify a scale to measure health care administrators' attitudes toward the use of e-mail communication and identify associations between e-mail communication attitudes and administrators' demographic and practice-related characteristics. METHODS: A preliminary list of features for e-mail communication was generated by reviewing the literature and Rogers' diffusion theory. The features were grouped initially into 5 hypothesized dimensions: relative advantage, norms (established rules of the social system), complexity, compatibility, and infrastructure. Following pilot testing, the main survey instrument was mailed to a total of 1500 health care administrators. Attitudes toward features of e-mail communication scale were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis with promax rotation. Internal consistency of the scale and its subscales was determined using Cronbach's alpha and item-total correlations. RESULTS: The overall response rate was 8.7%. Scale purification procedures reduced the preliminary scale of 22 items to a final scale of 20 items. The reliability of the scale measured by Cronbach's alpha was 0.81. Norms was considered the major barrier to e-mail communication, whereas infrastructure was considered a facilitator, and other features like relative advantage, complexity, and compatibility issues were perceived more as a barrier than a facilitator. The item related to and usage of e-mail by staff was statistically significant with the overall scale score (P=0.0095), complexity subscale score (P=0.0168), and infrastructure subscale score (P=0.0480). The relationship between number of years of experience of the administrator and infrastructure subscale score was statistically significant (P=0.0480). CONCLUSION: A scale developed to determine the attitudes of health care administrators regarding e-mail communication between patients and physicians demonstrated adequate content validity and reliability. SN - 1551-7411 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/17161809/Development_and_validation_of_a_scale_to_assess_attitudes_of_health_care_administrators_toward_the_use_of_e_mail_communication_between_patients_and_physicians_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S1551-7411(06)00009-X DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -