Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (College of Arts and Science)

Schools and Centres

Arts & Sciences

First Supervisor

Dr. Thuan Thai

Second Supervisor

Dr Alan McCarthy

Third Supervisor

Dr Bernadette Eather


Over the years, various interventions have been introduced to improve the medication management process. While these interventions have addressed some aspects predisposing the process to inefficiencies, significant gaps are still prevalent across the process. Studies have suggested that the goal of optimal medication therapy is achievable when information flow integrates across the various medication management process phases, stakeholders and departments involved as the patient moves through the process. To provide a cross-sectional view of the process, this study utilised a systemic philosophy to evaluate the information flow integration across the process.

The research approach adopted for this study takes a positivist paradigm, which is guided by the cause and effect (causality) belief. It explored numeric measures to evaluate the relationship between constructs that assessed information flow principles (accessibility, timeliness, granularity and transparency) within the medication process and the information integration. The research design was cross-sectional and analytical, and this ensures that findings are relevant to current situations across the Australian healthcare system. Data for this research was collected using an online self-administered survey and the data assessed information flow principles and technologies used in the medication management process. There were 88 participants in this study, including doctors, nurses and pharmacists. The questions and responses were coded for analysis and data analysis techniques used were frequency analysis, Pearson’s chi-square test and multivariate analysis.

Findings from this study indicates that the constructs evaluating accessibility, transparency and granularity had moderate associations with the information integration in the medication management process. Further analysis highlighted accessibility as a significant principle in explaining an increase or decrease in information integration in the medication management process. The accessibility construct referring to information retrieval was significant across the two tests conducted. Accessibility is directly related to information sharing and the assessment and monitoring and evaluation phases in the medication management process were identified as having the highest challenges with information sharing. Furthermore, the hybrid (electronic and paper) channel was preferred to support information integration in the medication management process by the participants. Among the technologies evaluated for the medication process, computer-provider-order-entry was found to be statistically significant in explaining an increase in information integration.

Overall, results from this study suggest that interventions for the medication management process in Australian acute care facilities should be directed towards improving accessibility, specifically information retrieval and the sharing of information with emphasis on the assessment and monitoring phases. Implementing strategies to address the gaps identified from this research can improve information integration across the process and thereby reducing medication errors, and improving patient care management. Furthermore, the technology adoption across the process highlights that technology adoption across participants’ facilities remains a challenge in Australia.

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