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Implementation of computerized technology in a palliative care unit

  • Beate André (a1) (a2), Gerd I. Ringdal (a3), Jon H. Loge (a1) (a4), Toril Rannestad (a2) and Stein Kaasa (a1) (a5)...



Symptom assessment is important in palliative care. Computerized technology (CT) is now available for use in such assessments. Barriers against implementation of CT in health care in general are well known, but less is known about how such technology is perceived by palliative health care personnel. The aim of the present study was to investigate the experience with implementation of CT among personnel in symptom assessment at a palliative care unit.


Seventeen respondents from a hospital ward unit and an outpatient clinic unit participated in an in-depth interview. A qualitative approach was used in collecting and analyzing the data.


Respondents at the hospital ward unit were better motivated than respondents at an outpatient clinic unit. It was stated that the health condition of the patient is important in their perception of the tool as useful or not. Conflicts between “high tech” and “high touch” were reported in both units.

Significance of results:

When the implementation process is conducted in such a manner that the health care personnel are involved, benefits of the tool can be realized. Thus, effective implementation and use of high tech can lead to more time released for high touch.


Corresponding author

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Beate André, Department of Cancer Research & Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, 5th floor cancer building, St. Olavs Hospital, N-7005 Trondheim, Norway. E-mail:


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Palliative & Supportive Care
  • ISSN: 1478-9515
  • EISSN: 1478-9523
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