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Clinicians’ Perceptions of Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) Use in Patient Care in Eastern Province Hospitals in Saudi Arabia

Authors Al-Kahtani N, Al-Dhaif E, Alsaihtati N, Farid K, AlKhater S

Received 19 December 2020

Accepted for publication 9 March 2021

Published 31 March 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 743—750

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JMDH.S296828

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser


Nouf Al-Kahtani, Esra Al-Dhaif, Noor Alsaihtati, Khalid Farid, Suzan AlKhater

Department of Health Information Management and Technology, College of Public Health, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence: Nouf Al-Kahtani
Department of Health Information Management and Technology, College of Public Health, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
Email [email protected]

Purpose: The picture archiving and communication system (PACS) is one of the most important tools used in patient care in many hospitals worldwide. It allows clinicians to remotely communicate and consult with other clinicians on patient cases and view diagnostic images from different angles, thus facilitating patient diagnosis and treatment. Several studies have been conducted in Saudi Arabia to evaluate different aspects of PACS use; however, no comprehensive study has been conducted in its Eastern Province. This study aimed to investigate clinicians’ perceptions of the advantages and disadvantages of the use of PACS in Eastern Province hospitals in Saudi Arabia and identify the factors that affect their perceptions and its use. In addition, it aimed to gather recommendations of clinicians for improving the system and its implementation.
Methods: A qualitative approach with grounded theory method was employed. A sample of 18 residents, radiologists, and consultants from three Eastern Province hospitals in Saudi Arabia participated in the study. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews over a period of 7 months.
Results: The perceived advantages of PACS included providing quality images and the ability to manipulate their resolution, whereas the perceived barriers included low-speed internet connections and technical problems. Participants recommended providing clinicians remote access to the system and implementing a mobile PACS application. The theory that emerged from the analysis revealed that demographic, system-related, and hospital-related factors affected participants’ perspectives of PACS and its use.
Conclusion: The results of this study and its theoretical model can help identify areas of improvement and inform policy and strategic planning for the effective implementation of PACS in patient care in Saudi Arabia.

Keywords: radiology, healthcare technology, medical technology, patient care

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