New Tools for Evaluation : Their Application to Computers
Expenditure on experimental computer application in NHS hospitals so far exceeds £26 million (see Committee of Public Accounts 1976) and expenditure on evaluation alone exceeds £750,000. The measures which have been used for evaluation of computer systems include reductions in the time spent by patients in clinics, the turn-round time of laboratory reports, the quality of information provided (its accuracy, completeness and ease of use) and the time spent by hospital staff on tasks which are affected by computer systems (DHSS 1977). It has been assumed that improvements in these intermediate outputs would lead to improvements in the accuracy and timeliness of clinical decision-making and hence improve the quality of care given with benefits for the health of the patients treated.
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