Academic writing · eHealth · Medical Records Online · Popular science

New eHealth publications are coming up!

Blackbird

A few days ago I got a notification that a journal article manuscript, focusing on patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHRs), has been accepted for publication! There are of course a few things left to do related to proof reading and productions, but quite soon fresh results from a large follow-up study on the effects of PAEHR from the healthcare professionals’ perspective (Swedish context) will be out there. I wrote the article with Åsa Cajander and it will be published open access. I will of course write a new post with more information and a link to the article when it has been published.

If you have been following this blog for a while you might have seen that two earlier journal papers on the PAEHR topic were announced in press releases prepared by Åsa and me (you can read about the effects of those press releases here and here). Since there is no reason to change a winning strategy, we will do the same thing with the soon-to-be-published paper. As a matter of fact, a draft of the press release is already written and will soon be reviewed by our contact at the communications division at Uppsala University. I think that it is great that the university encourages public outreach activities (writing press releases being one of many examples) and that researchers can get support both during the writing process and with the actual publication of the press release. Even though I work at Örebro University now, it seems reasonable to publish the press release from Uppsala University, since all parts of the study were conducted there. Soon, however, I will start exploring how I can work with the communications department here at Örebro University regarding e.g. press releases about the work performed here.

By the way, the accept decision was not the only decision I got from a journal last Saturday – I also got a “major revision” decision on another manuscript, where I’m a co-author (meaning that it will probably be published after 1-3 revision rounds). I have definitely had worse days 🙂

I took the blog picture, showing a singing blackbird, at my countryside at Gräsö a few weeks ago.

DOME · eHealth · Grant application · Medical Records Online · National patient survey · Popular science · Uppsala Health Summit

Overview of my research within eHealth

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Since I am still very much on a planning stage regarding the research I will perform during my recently started assistant professorship at Örebro University, I will take the opportunity to write a few posts about the research I have performed and what is currently going on. I will start by discussing research within the eHealth domain.

What have I done related to eHealth?

Those who have followed this blog during the latest years already know about my research on patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHRs), which I conducted during my time as a postdoc at Uppsala University. You can read a short summary about my two major studies (a national patient survey and an interview/survey study with clinicians at Uppsala University Hospital), submitted grant applications and conference activities in this blog post.

In total, my research on eHealth has, up until today, resulted in the following two journal publications (links lead to the open access articles):

and the following seven conference proceedings (most of the links lead to open access publications):

The work within the eHealth domain has also resulted in the following popular science publications (and some other news coverage, which you can read about here and here):

To sum up, my research within this domain, up until today, has focused on PAEHRs and their effects for patients and healthcare professionals.

My ongoing research within the eHealth domain

I am currently involved in quite a few ongoing research activities related to eHealth, especially when it comes to pushing journal manuscripts through the peer-review process.

When it comes to data gathering and analysis, there is still a lot of work to do in the large interview/survey study at the Oncology department at Uppsala University Hospital that I mentioned before. For many different reasons we were not able to conduct all the 20 interviews with nurses that we had planned. Around 10 more interviews need to be performed. When it comes to the physicians, the data gathering is complete and we are working with the analysis. My hope is that we will be able to submit a first overview article about those interviews in late autumn 2019 or early spring 2020. Specific theme articles are also planned, but they require a more in-depth analysis. The articles based on this study will be very important for research on patient accessible electronic health records in Sweden, since this is the first large follow-up study in Sweden regarding long-term effects of PAEHR on the work environment of healthcare professionals.

When it comes to the national patient survey all data gathering is completed, but there are still some themes from the survey that we want to look into in more depth. These include information literacy, computer security and comparisons between different disease groups.

I’m currently working on some journal publications together with colleagues in the DOME consortium. One of these articles reports on findings from the survey on the effect of PAEHR on the work environment of healthcare professionals, distributed to physicians and nurses at the Oncology department at Uppsala University Hospital. I expect this article to be published quite soon (a minor revision is about to be submitted back to the journal), so there will be a publication and, of course, a press release coming up pretty soon. One journal manuscript focusing on sharing health records is currently in the first review round and two journal manuscripts based on the patient survey, focusing on cancer and psychiatry patients, respectively, can be submitted to journals quite soon.

Upcoming research on eHealth

As I said in the beginning of this post, I’m very much on the planning stage when it comes to future research. There are a few activities, however, that I’m sure I will be working with during the upcoming months (these will get their own blog posts later on):

  • Currently, it seems that I will submit at least two conference articles to next year’s version of Medical Informatics Europe. The deadline for submissions is September 1st, but on the other hand there is a scope limit on five pages. One article will be about results from the interview/survey study with healthcare professionals and the other will focus on results from the patient survey.
  • Quite soon, I will take the lead on a more theoretical journal article, focusing on the role of the PAEHR as a communication mediator in healthcare.
  • The above-mentioned article is directly related to a research grant application which is currently being reviewed by the Swedish Research Council (VR) – if the application is accepted I will finally get the opportunity to lead my very own research project!
  • There is also another grant application, related to psychiatry records online, which is currently being reviewed by the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare. 2020 can be a very interesting year, indeed!
communication · eHealth · Group work · Haptics · Human-Computer Interaction · Medical Records Online · Multimodality · Social media in higher education

Today I start working at Örebro University as an assistant professor!

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Today I can finally take the next step on the academic ladder, since I’m starting up my new job as assistant professor in Informatics at the centre for empirical research on information systems at Örebro University! In November 2018 I applied for the position and in the middle of the spring 2019 I was called to an interview. A few months later I was offered the position. I’m very excited about this great opportunity and I of course intend to make the most out of it. After a very long blog break (mostly due to health issues and the fact that my research efforts during the spring has been rather minor), this also seems like a good opportunity to start posting again.

The assistant professorship is the first step on the so called tenure track. It is an academic position limited to four years, but the intention is often (as in my case) to promote the assistant professor to an associate professor towards the end – a position which is not limited in time. My job includes 70% research and 30% teaching, which is quite common for assistant professorships. I’m not sure yet where e.g. service and communication (like administration, blogging and interviews) fits in.

The job as assistant professor in Informatics is a very good fit for me, since I will be able to continue to work with all my main research interests (the main theme is computer supported communication):

  • eHealth
    – I will continue looking at how patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHR) affect the communication between patients and care professionals. One thing I’m particularly curious about, and that is actually the focus of a project grant application currently in review, is how one can incorporate the PAEHR as a communication mediator curing doctor-patient meetings. Another application in review is about the effects and implementation of psychiatry records online.
  • Multimodal interaction
    – I will also continue looking at how multimodal feedback (especially haptics and sound) can be used to promote collaboration between sighted and visually impaired pupils/students in group work. Most of today’s assistive technologies that are used in school settings are not adapted for collaboration and this is highly problematic when it comes to inclusion of visually impaired pupils/students in group work settings.
  • Social media in higher education
    – My intention is also to continue investigating how social media like Twitter and Facebook can be used as supplementary communication channels in higher education courses.

When it comes to the areas of eHealth and social media in higher education, research is already being conducted by my new colleagues at Örebro University. Multimodal interaction would however be a new research theme for the department. I will elaborate on the different themes listed above in later blog posts as work is progressing. Other research themes from the department (like computer security and ICT for development) could also be added.

I have not heard anything yet regarding the teaching, but given the department’s focus I guess I could be involved in master’s thesis supervision, human-computer interaction project courses and programming courses. I will write more about the teaching part when I know more.

The blog image that I used for this post is one of my own – I took it a few weeks ago during a week I spent in Abisko in northern Sweden.

Academic writing · conference · DOME · eHealth · Grant application · Human-Computer Interaction · Medical Records Online · National patient survey · Pedagogy · Social media in higher education

Looking back at my two years as a postdoc at Uppsala University, part 1: research

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Since my two years as a postdoc at Uppsala University ended September 28, I will try to summarize my results and experiences in a few blog posts before this year ends. I will start today by writing about my research activities. I took the blog picture during my last birdwatching trip to Öland.

Even though most of my research activities during the postdoc period were focused on eHealth, I also did some work related to multimodal communication and pedagogy. Thus, I was active within all of my main research fields. In total, I got one journal article published, two journal articles accepted, one book chapter published and 11 conference papers published. I also attended nine conferences and submitted two research grant applications as main applicant.

Research within eHealth

Within this field I led two major studies related to patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHRs). The interview/observation/survey study at Uppsala University Hospital, which I introduce here, focuses on the effect of PAEHRs on physicians’ and nurses’ work environment. The survey part is completed and a journal manuscript, written by me and Åsa Cajander, was submitted to Health Informatics Journal slightly after my postdoc period had ended. The results are really interesting and I will of course get back to them when the article has been published. Due to some health issues and logistical difficulties, we have only conducted about half of the planned interviews with physicians and nurses, but we will hopefully get the majority of the remaining ones during the first months of the spring term. The analysis of the already performed physician interviews are still ongoing, and it’s very clear that the material that we already have will give many new insights into long-term effect of PAEHR on the work environment of healthcare professionals. This has really been an interesting study and it was also the first study for which I got the opportunity to write an ethical application. It has also been quite a challenge to coordinate the work with nine colleagues from five different universities.

The other major study I was leading was the national patient survey, which I introduce here. I have written about it many times on this blog since it has resulted in several scientific publications as well as presentations. Even in this case, one of the toughest challenges has been to coordinate the work in the distributed project team. This study has already resulted in one journal article and three conference papers and we are currently working with several journal article manuscripts which I will get back to later on. I really enjoy this study and I will keep working with it until everything is published. The study is very important since it’s the first major follow-up study on patients’ attitudes towards and experiences with PAEHRs.

During my time as a postdoc I also took part in the work with two research grant applications, as a co-applicant, within this research area. One of them was an EU grant application led by Meena Daivadanam at Karolinska University Hospital, with the title “The ENGAGE Trial: Improving and health societal outcomes for comorbid mental disorders associated with type 2 diabetes through an integrated support and engagement platform in Uganda and Sweden”. It was an interesting process with many Skype meetings (extremely early in the morning since one participant was in Australia) and a lot of interesting discussions. Unfortunately, we did not get the grant. As I understand it we were one point from getting it. The other research grant application concerned psychiatry records online. My DOME consortium colleague Gunilla Myreteg was the main applicant of this AFA insurances application focusing on implementation and short term effects of psychiatry records online in Region Uppsala. We did not get that grant either, but we are definitely not giving up!

I also attended several conferences related to eHealth during my postdoc period. I really enjoyed participating in and presenting at Vitalis 2017 and Vitalis/MIE (Medical Informatics Europe) 2018. There were so many interesting presentations and taking part in the 1.5 hours DOME arrangements was great! You can see my summary of the Vitalis 2017 version of the DOME session here. At Vitalis/MIE 2018 I was actually active with own presentations and a workshop during each of the three conference days, which was a little tiresome. You can read about that here. My very first conference experience during my postdoc was actually one of the most interesting ones, since I participated as a patient for the very first time! You can read about my contribution here. A few months later I actually got the opportunity to act as a patient once again – this time in a role play at the conference “EHealth in Norway Future Health”! That was a really interesting experience for me both from a patient’s and a researcher’s perspective. You can read about my experiences from this episode here. I really hope that I will get the chance to contribute to research from the patient’s perspective again!

 

Research within multimodal communication

My very few research activities within this subject area were mostly related to research grant applications. During spring 2017 I submitted a VR grant application, with five co-applicants from four universities in Sweden. The application focused on collaboration between deafblind and sighted pupils in a school setting, and more specifically on how multimodal learning environments can support this collaboration. Writing this grant application was a great learning experience! In the end, we did not get this grant but we still got good ratings (“Very good” on all aspects that related to the scientific content). You can read more about my experiences in this blog post. The other grant application was actually a draft which I submitted to Forte during spring 2018. It focused on multimodal learning environments for collaboration between sighted and visually impaired pupils. Unfortunately, the draft was not accepted. After the postdoc ended I wrote another application on this topic as main applicant, but I will cover that in another blog post.

I also got one journal article published in this research field, “Haptic feedback combined with movement sonification using a friction sound improves task performance in a virtual throwing task.” The article presents results from an experiment conducted at KTH right before my postdoc period began. The experiment was extensive and included eye-tracking and different combinations of haptic and audio feedback. I will write more about this study in a later blog post. A few conference papers on results from the eye-tracking analysis have also been published.

 

Research within pedagogy

I also conducted research related to pedagogy and more specifically on the effects of using social media as complementary communication channels in higher education courses. The most important thing I worked on was a short book chapter which was published in the book “Digitalisering av högre utbildning” [Digitalization of higher education] about a month before my postdoc ended. I really enjoyed working on this chapter, together with co-author Pernilla Josefsson, where I contribute with my experiences of using Twitter as one of the communication channels in a university course in engineering communication. This is my very first contribution to teacher education! You can read about the chapter, and find a link to the book, here.

We also contributed with a poster describing a later study on using a teacher-administrated Facebook-group as a complementary communication channel in a course in human-computer interaction. I will write more about this in my next blog post about my postdoc period, since the poster was based on work performed in a pedagogical course I took. Last, I collaborated with several authors when writing a conference paper about a critical incident from the 2017 version of a master course in human-computer interaction. You can read about the paper here.

DOME · eHealth · Medical Records Online · National patient survey

New extended abstract on age-related differences in the experiences of reading patient accessible electronic health records

Age_differences

The national patient survey on patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHRs) in Sweden keeps generating research output. A while ago I wrote a blog post about the first journal publication (an overview article) which was based on the survey and another one about the effects of the press release where the publication was introduced to the public. The fact is that an extended abstract, based on the same study, was published in the Finnish journal Informaatiotutkimus just a few days after the overview article was published.

The extended abstract, with the title “Differences in the experiences of reading medical records online: Elderly, Older and Younger Adults compared” was accepted to the Information Studies Symposium 2018. Isto Huvila, who is leading the analysis and writing processes of the parts of the survey related to information literacy and age-related tendencies, was the first author and the other authors were Kristina Eriksson-Backa, me, Gunilla Myreteg and Maria Hägglund. Kristina is a member of Isto’s project HIBA (Taking Health Information Behaviour into Account: implications of a neglected element for successful implementation of consumer health technologies on older adults) and all others are members of the DOME consortium.

The extended abstract, which can be downloaded for free here, is very short and can be seen as a teaser of what to come. As we conclude in the abstract, there are many interesting significant differences between patients from the three age categories used (Younger adults, Older adults and Elderly) when it comes to experiences of using the Swedish PAEHR system Journalen. Of course, we are not done here – we will dig deep into the data and look for interesting patterns and tendencies which in turn can be used to understand how persons from different age groups are affected by PAEHR.

I will get back to this topic soon, when a conference paper on age and information behavior is formally published. Aside from health literacy and age, we work on several other important topics from the survey like for example psychiatry, cancer and information security so you can expect a lot more from the national patient survey study! Stay tuned for more!  J

eHealth · Medical Records Online · Popular science

Some comments on this year’s Research Grand Prix final

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As I wrote in my latest blog post my colleague Hanife Rexhepi participated in this year’s Research Grand Prix final, which took place last Tuesday in Stockholm. The whole event started out with a short introduction by the Swedish actor and comedian Måns Nilsson who was the host of the event. During this introduction he also introduced and talked shortly with the three jury members Katrin Sundberg (Swedish director, actress and writer), Patrik Hadenius (CEO at Utgivarna, an interest organization for Swedish publicists) and Agnes Wold (Swedish senior physician and professor in clinical bacteriology). The jury members focused on different aspects of the presentations – Katrin focused on the performance on stage, Patrik focused on how easy it was to understand the presented research and Agnes focused on how well the research processes were described by the finalists.

After the introduction, the finalists presented one after the other. As I said in my last blog post, the presentations were very short (max 4 minutes) and the given time frame was probably the toughest part of the presentations. It’s certainly not easy to pick a small and yet interesting problem from your years of research and then describe it in four minutes so that everyone can understand its significance, while at the same time delivering a performance up on the stage! After each presentation each jury member gave the presenter some comments based on their focus aspect (performance, understandability and process clarity), after which each of them gave a point in the range 1-5.

Hanife was the second one, out of the seven finalists, to go up on the stage and deliver her research presentation. She did a perfect job on all levels! She remained calm during the entire presentation and delivered all parts of it with confidence, just as I knew she would. She had named her presentation “The tale of your patient record”. The tale started when Uppsala County Council made it possible for patients to access their medical records online in 2012 and the presentation ended with a note that some people in the audience might participate in future studies and in that way help the researchers write the next chapter! The jury members were also very happy with her presentation. Katrin really liked the tale setting and Hanife’s overall performance on stage. Patrik thought the research was presented in a way that made it really easy to follow and understand. Agnes was also very happy with the description of the research process. In the end, Hanife got 4 points from Patrik and 5 from the other jury members, placing her on a shared second place with regards to the jury points.

After all presentations there was a break with a dance performance on stage and after a few minutes it was time for the audience to vote! Before a particular finalist received points (1-5) from the voters s(he) held a mini 30 minutes presentation to remind the voters what the presentation was about. After this reminder we got 10 seconds to cast our votes.

Unfortunately, Hanife did not get one of the first three positions in the competition. The winner was Rezan Güler from Royal Institute of Technology, who held a great four minutes presentation about how one can customize proteins for beating cancer. You can see a picture of all finalists here as well as a description of all of them. On that page you can also find a link to youtube, where you can see the entire final! I can really recommend it to those who understand Swedish!

eHealth · Medical Records Online · Popular science

My colleague Hanife Rexhepi competes in the Forskar Grand Prix final next week!

Hanife

About half a year ago a wrote a blog post about Hanife Rexhepi’s thesis defense which I attended in May. We have been colleagues in the DOME consortium since I joined about two years ago and we have, among other things, held joint presentations at Vitalis and we are currently collaborating on several journal papers which are based on the national patient survey on patient accessible electronic health records. As I wrote in the blog post about her defense she presented her work with great confidence and clarity! That was a scientific presentation but, evidently, she is really good at popular science presentations as well.

About two months ago, Hanife and six of her colleagues from University of Skövde competed in their section of “Forskar Grand Prix” – a competition where the participants should present, during no more than four minutes, their research in the best possible ways. Thus, it’s a science communication competition. Hanife managed to win the competition, with her presentation about patient accessible electronic health records! Here is an interview that you can watch (in Swedish), which was held right after she had been announced as the winner.

Being the winner of the local Forskar Grand Prix means that she will also present her research in the final, which is held in Stockholm next week on Tuesday, November 27! In that final she will compete against six researchers from other universities. You can read about the topic for her presentation here. I will be in the audience during the final and I will also join the gathering afterwards. If you cannot be there, but still want to follow the final and join the voting, you can watch the whole thing live on the page that is linked here. I wish Hanife the best of luck!