OZIS and the politics of safety: using ICT to create a regionally accessible patient medication record

Int J Med Inform. 2007 Jun:76 Suppl 1:S229-35. doi: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2006.05.023. Epub 2006 Jul 5.


In studies on success and failure of ICT applications in health care, the 'context' is often used to explain the failure of a system and seldom to explain the success of a system. Science and Technology Studies (STS) have showed that for understanding success and failure of phenomena, one has to take a symmetrical approach and thus use the same concept for analyzing success and failure. In this article we analyze the success of OZIS, a communication protocol that makes it possible for pharmacists to exchange medication data by sharing a regionally accessible electronic medication record. Though OZIS serves a common goal - reducing medication errors - the stakeholders that are involved also have other, competing, interests. By focussing on the context and more specifically the interests of the stakeholders, we will show how the success of OZIS can be explained. By doing this, we will also show that this context is highly dynamic and that continuously changing incentives and constraints within the context lead to both facilitating and threatening the success of OZIS.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Access to Information*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Medical Record Linkage
  • Medical Records Systems, Computerized*
  • Medication Errors / prevention & control
  • Netherlands
  • Pharmaceutical Services*
  • Politics*
  • Regional Health Planning*
  • Safety Management*