Healthcare systems are facing great challenges due to increased
share of aging population, growing health needs and economic
restraints. To keep a high quality of assistance it is important
to invest in health technologies (HTs) that have the potential
of improving health outcomes. Even though a lot of guidance
does exist on how HTs should be introduced, used and
dismissed, there is a surprising gap in literature concerning the
awareness of hospitals in the actual utilization of HTs, namely
utilization in daily practice after formal adoption.
We performed a systematic literature review of qualitative and
quantitative studies aimed at investigating hospital contextual
factors that influence the actual utilization of HTs at hospital
level. PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, Econlit and Ovid were
searched to retrieve studies published in English from 1st
January 2010 to 31st May 2018.
A total of 33 studies were included mostly addressing
information and communication technologies (ICTs).
Findings suggest that contextual factors that impact on
actual utilization of HTs at hospital level are ascribable to
four main families: financial factors, leadership styles, human
resource management and hospital infrastructure. It emerges
also that involving professionals at all levels and planning
people’s work and competencies are major determinants of
HTs actual utilization.
The evidence suggests that several contextual factors play a
major role in HTs actual utilization at hospital level even
though data are mostly referred to ICTs being the other HTs
unexplored. Indeed, findings from this study suggest that
numerous items should be evaluated when considering to use a
new HTs at hospital level. Nevertheless, evidence regarding
actual utilization of medical and surgical HTs is still lacking
and future research is needed.
Financial factors, leadership styles, human resource management,
hospital infrastructure are relevant determinants of
actual utilization of new HTs at hospital level.
The evidence on contextual factors that influence actual
utilization of HTs is mostly referred to ICTs and further
research is indeed deserved.
- Contextual factors
- Health technologies