Dental health care technologies: factors affecting technology adoption and latest information technology solutions

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School of Business | Bachelor's thesis
Degree programme
Tieto- ja palvelujohtaminen
The thesis studies the factors affecting information technology adoption in dental health care. The scope is on information systems used in diagnostics and clinical work. Besides the factors affecting technology adoption, the possibilities and challenges of two important technologies, 3D virtual workflow and CAD/CAM are introduced. The 3D technologies are studied further through a case study, Planmeca Romexis 3D applications. Through the thesis, the effects of the technologies for the whole value chain from the technology vendor to the patient are evaluated. Also, the economical side of the technologies is discussed. The thesis is based on a broad literature review. At first, dental clinical workflow is introduced to understand what kind of environment the information systems are facing. Second, a theoretical framework for technology adoption including Technology Acceptance Model by Davis (1989) and related theories is constructed, followed by a more throughout literature review on the factors characteristic to clinical environment and dental health care. The literature review is supported with the case study and interviews of specialists. The literature review finds various factors for technology adoption in dental health care. These factors are divided into usability and functional factors, work efficiency factors, learning curve factors and social & organisational factors. The general theoretical framework can be seen rather applicable for dental health care scope, but some factors such as patient safety or dental team’s sociocultural relationships are very characteristic to dentistry. 3D virtual workflow and CAD/CAM are seen to provide advantages into dentistry, and they’re bringing solutions to the factors discussed in the thesis. The thesis founds also challenges and problems arising from these technologies. Planmeca’s solutions are providing further insight on the possibilities of real-life solutions for 3D virtual workflow. The thesis has limitations since it’s based on a literature review, but a similar Information System Management-view for information systems in dentistry is rather rare. Thus, it can provide information on which factors to take into consideration for vendors designing dental information systems as well as for organizations that are considering investing in new information systems.
Thesis advisor
Wallenius, Jyrki
technology adoption, dental health care, information systems, diagnostics
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