Technological capabilities to assess digital excellence in hospitals in high performing Health Care Systems: International eDelphi exercise

Marta Krasuska, Robin Williams, Aziz Sheikh, Bryony Dean Franklin, Catherine Heeney, Wendy Lane, Hajar Mozaffar, Kathy Mason, Sally Eason, Susan Hinder, Rachel Dunscombe, Henry W W Potts, Kathrin Cresswell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Hospitals worldwide are developing ambitious digital transformation programs as part of broader efforts to create digitally advanced health care systems. However, there is as yet no consensus on how best to characterize and assess digital excellence in hospitals.

Our aim was to develop an international agreement on a defined set of technological capabilities to assess digital excellence in hospitals.

We conducted a two-stage international modified electronic Delphi (eDelphi) consensus-building exercise, which included a qualitative analysis of free-text responses. In total, 31 international health informatics experts participated, representing clinical, academic, public, and vendor organizations.

We identified 35 technological capabilities that indicate digital excellence in hospitals. These are divided into two categories: (a) capabilities within a hospital (n=20) and (b) capabilities enabling communication with other parts of the health and social care system, and with patients and carers (n=15). The analysis of free-text responses pointed to the importance of nontechnological aspects of digitally enabled change, including social and organizational factors. Examples included an institutional culture characterized by a willingness to transform established ways of working and openness to risk-taking. The availability of a range of skills within digitization teams, including technological, project management and business expertise, and availability of resources to support hospital staff, were also highlighted.

We have identified a set of criteria for assessing digital excellence in hospitals. Our findings highlight the need to broaden the focus from technical functionalities to wider digital transformation capabilities.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of medical Internet research
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2020

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • digital excellence
  • digital maturity
  • Delphi technique
  • hospitals
  • eHealth


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