Back to Annual Meeting
Back to Annual Meeting
APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Online communities in health care services: Measuring the patient experience

Priya Nambisan, PhD, David Gustafson, PhD, and Suzanne Pingree, PhD. Center for Health Systems Research and Analysis (CHSRA), University of Wisconsin - Madison, 1128, WARF Building, 610 Walnut Street, Madison, WI 53726, (608) 265-6276, nambisan@chsra.wisc.edu

As the intensity of competition continues to increase in the health care industry, health-care organizations (HCO) have started seeking out innovative and cost-effective ways to better serve their patients and to establish stronger relationships with them. Some health care organizations have already realized the significance of online customer community as a complementary health care resource to enhance the overall quality of health care services delivery. In this study, I propose and validate a model that examines how HCOs can utilize online customer communities as a knowledge management (KM) and customer relationship management (CRM) tool – and, thereby deliver an overall positive experience to the patient as well as shape patients' attitudes towards the HCO and its services. I advance a new construct, online community experience (OCE), to enhance our understanding of customers' interaction experience in such online communities. This study adopts a multi-disciplinary approach and draws on theories in knowledge management, customer relationship management, and communication to identify the critical antecedents of OCE. I present hypotheses that relate KM and CRM -based variables to the OCE construct as well as those that relate the OCE construct to customer attitudes and their overall well-being. The model is currently being validated using data collected from a health services center (CHESS) at UW-Madison. The Comprehensive Health Enhancement Support System (CHESS) is a computer-based system of integrated health care services designed to help individuals cope with a health crisis or medical concern. The study findings are expected to hold important implications for HCOs, particularly with regard to their KM practices and their CRM strategies.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to

Keywords: Health Care Quality, Health Management Information Systems

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No

Technology Adoption and Health Administration

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA