Nurses' Role in Implementing and Sustaining Acute Telemedicine: A Mixed-Methods, Pre-Post Design Using an Extended Technology Acceptance Model

J Nurs Scholarsh. 2020 Jan;52(1):34-46. doi: 10.1111/jnu.12509. Epub 2019 Sep 11.


Purpose: Technology-based systems like telemedicine are frequently being implemented into healthcare settings, impacting clinician practices. Little is known about factors influencing acute telemedicine uptake, if factors differ across time, or between nurses and non-nurses.

Design: A mixed-methods, pre-post design with implementation of a new acute stroke telemedicine service.

Methods: A survey based on an extended Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) was administered to clinicians involved in acute stroke care at 16 regional hospitals (2014-2017). Open-ended questions postimplementation (at 6 months) included strengths of the program and areas to improve. Subsequently, a secondary analysis of nurses' semistructured interviews at the first telemedicine site (2010-2011) was completed to provide greater explanatory detail.

Findings: Surveys were completed by nurses (preimplementation n = 77, postimplementation n = 92) and non-nurses (pre n = 90, post n = 44). Preimplementation, perceived usefulness was the only significant predictor of intending to use telemedicine for nurses, while perceived ease of use and social influence were significant for non-nurses. Postimplementation, perceived usefulness was significant for both groups, as was facilitating conditions for nurses. Specific examples aligned to TAM categories from our detailed interviews (n = 11 nurses) included perceived usefulness (improved clinical support and patient care), perceived ease of use (technical, clinical aspects), facilitating conditions (setting, education, confidence), and social influence (working relationships).

Conclusions: Important factors for acute stroke telemedicine varied between nurses and non-nurses, and changed after implementation. The benefits of telemedicine should be emphasized to nurses. Preimplementation, more non-nurses wanted systems to be easy. Support in clinical, technical, and relationship aspects of telemedicine consultations is required.

Clinical relevance: Nurses are influential in implementing acute telemedicine, which is complex, with clinical and technical aspects entwined. Evidence-based implementation strategies must be tailored over time, and between nurses and non-nurses, to ensure initial uptake and ongoing use.

Keywords: Implementation; nurses; stroke; sustainability; telemedicine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Australia
  • Biomedical Technology*
  • Critical Care
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intention
  • Interdisciplinary Research
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nurse's Role*
  • Nurses*
  • Qualitative Research
  • Research Design
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Telemedicine / methods*
  • Young Adult