Title: Increasing complexity of medical technology in helicopter emergency medical services and consequences for patient safety

Authors: Håkon Bjorheim Abrahamsen; Frank Asche; Eirik Bjorheim Abrahamsen

Addresses: Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Safety, Economics and Planning, University of Stavanger, Stavanger, 4036, Norway; Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care, Stavanger University Hospital, Stavanger, 4011, Norway; Department of Research and Development, The Norwegian Air Ambulance Foundation, Drøbak, 1448, Norway ' School of Forest Resources and Conservation, Institute for Sustainable Food Systems, University of Florida, 1741 Museum Road, 185 Rogers Hall, P.O. Box 110570, Gainesville, FL 32611-057, USA; Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Safety, Economics and Planning, University of Stavanger, Stavanger, 4036, Norway ' Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Safety, Economics and Planning, University of Stavanger, Stavanger, 4036, Norway

Abstract: There is a trend for helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS) to rapidly adopt technologic advances from specialised healthcare within hospitals, ignoring other parts of the HEMS system. Using economic theory, we show that, when making investments in new technology, lack of consideration of system factors does not necessarily improve practice. The introduction of new technology may unintentionally add to work system complexity and workload. This can make a negative contribution to patient safety and healthcare quality.

Keywords: complexity; medical technology; helicopter emergency medical services; patient safety.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTPM.2018.093852

International Journal of Technology, Policy and Management, 2018 Vol.18 No.3, pp.234 - 246

Available online: 27 Jul 2018 *

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