Author(s): Yu Ping, Comensoli, Nicholas
Ageing population and the serious shortage of skilled work force has drawn national attention to Aged Care. Despite the general recognition that information technology provides an effective means for acquiring, representing, processing and managing knowledge and data within health care if its application aligns with the business needs of an organisation, the diffusion of IT in Australian Aged Care is not satisfactory. The enabling role of IT in Aged Care is yet to be demonstrated. This report addresses the barriers to the adoption of IT in Australian Aged Care. The objective of the study is to identify the key factors contributing to the low adoption of IT in the sector. An exploratory study involving literature research, unstructured and structured interviews were adopted. This is the first phase of a continuous study. Our investigation suggested that barriers to the adoption of IT occur at both the individual and organizational level. Management and culture are the main instigators of barriers to IT adoption. Six major categories of barriers to the adoption of IT were elaborated. They are (1) lack of management/stakeholder support, (2) cultural resistance towards IT adoption, (3) cost considerations, (4) staffing issues, (5) work practice and (6) the capacity to manage change. The purpose of the research is to accurately identify barriers to IT adoption in aged care. The research findings will provide strong evidence to support the development of effective technology diffusion strategies, guidelines and procedures to help the industry, government, medical software company and various stakeholders to fully harness the benefits of IT investment in Aged Care.