A qualitative evaluation of general practitioners’ views on protocol-driven eReferral in Scotland

Matt-Mouley Bouamrane, Frances S. Mair

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The ever increasing volume of referrals from primary care to specialist services is putting considerable pressure on resource-constrained health services while effective communication across fragmented services remains a substantial challenge. Previous studies have suggested that electronic referrals (eReferral) can bear important benefits for cross-organisational processes and patient care management. We conducted 25 semi-structured interviews and 1 focus group with primary care providers to elucidate General Practitioners’ (GPs) perspectives on information management processes in the patient pathway in NHSScotland, 1 focus group with members of the Scottish Electronic Patient Record programme and one interview with a senior architect of the Scottish Care Information national eReferral System (SCI Gateway). Using Normalisation Process Theory, we performed a qualitative analysis to elucidate GPs’ perspectives on eReferral to identify the factors which they felt either facilitated or hindered referral processes.
Original languageEnglish
Article number30
Number of pages14
JournalBMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making
Publication statusPublished - 9 Apr 2014


  • information systems
  • medical informatics applications
  • eReferral

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