Overcoming Personal Barriers to Adoption when Technology Enables Information to be Available to Others
Corey M. Angst
University of Notre Dame
University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business
Robert H. Smith School Research Paper No. RHS 06-033
Electronic health records constitute a significant technological advance in the way medical information is stored, communicated, and processed by the multiple parties involved in the delivery of health care. However, there is widespread concern that privacy issues may impede the diffusion of this technology. In this study, we integrate the Concern For Information Privacy (CFIP) construct with the Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM) to examine attitude persuasion regarding the use of EHRs when concerns about privacy of information are present in patients. We draw from attitude and attitude persuasion literatures to develop our hypotheses that individuals can be persuaded to support the use of EHRs, even in the presence of significant privacy concerns, if appropriate messages about the value of EHRs are imparted to the recipient.
Using a novel experimental methodology, we randomly assign two different types of respondents(high and low involvement) to two different treatments (strong and weak argument quality) and assess the impact of CFIP on the relationship between these variables and attitude change. We find that an individual's CFIP interacts with argument quality and issue involvement to affect attitudes toward the use of EHRs (three-way interaction term is significant (F(7,329)=5.63, p<.001). We interpret these interaction effects in the text and discuss contributions to both academic and practitioner literatures. One key contribution of this study is the investigation of privacy concerns, which must be addressed for widespread acceptance and adoption of EHRs. A second contribution is the theoretical application and empirical test of ELM - which has been applied in the IS and medical informatics literatures in a limited fashion - to the phenomenon of IT attitudes. ELM is widely used in the psychology and sociology disciplines and has been shown to be a highly informative theory and as such, is worthy of more attention in other fields. Finally, this is the first study to apply a privacy instrument in the context of healthcare services.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 22
Keywords: Privacy, ELM, EHR, CFIP, Attitude
Date posted: August 4, 2006