A systematic review of interventions promoting clinical information retrieval technology (CIRT) adoption by healthcare professionals
This paper presents the evidence on the effectiveness of interventions promoting the use of clinical information retrieval technologies (CIRTs) by healthcare professionals. We electronically searched articles published between January 1990 and March 2008 using following inclusion criteria: (1) participants were healthcare professionals; (2) specific intervention promoted CIRT adoption; (3) studies were randomised controlled trials, controlled clinical trials, controlled before and after studies or interrupted time series analyses; and (4) they objectively reporting measured outcomes on CIRT use. We found nine studies focusing on CIRT use. Main outcomes measured were searching skills and/or frequency of use of electronic databases by healthcare professionals. Three studies reported a positive effect of the intervention on CIRT use, one showed a positive impact post-intervention, and four studies failed to demonstrate significant intervention effect. The ninth study examined financial disincentives, and found a significant negative effect of introducing user fees for searching MEDLINE in clinical settings. A meta-analysis showed that educational meetings were the only type of interventions reporting consistent positive effects on CIRT adoption. CIRT is an information and communication technology commonly used in healthcare settings. Interventions promoting CIRT adoption by healthcare professionals have shown some success in improving searching skills and use of electronic databases. However, the effectiveness of these interventions remains uncertain and more rigorous studies are needed.