E-LEARNING IN CLINICAL ENVIRONMENT: A NEW PARADIGM IN THE QUALITY OF HEALTHCARE
Due to rapid technological advances in the past decade, electronic learning has become a serious tool to unsure continuous specialized training and update. There is clear evidence of the efficiency and acceptance of e-learning within the clinical environment. Worldwide many clinics and healthcare organizations have invested in intellectual capital, developing human competencies related to the institution’s policies regarding quality and human resources and adopting e-learning in the personnel training process. Particularly, in the network of care of Chronic Kidney Diseases, the electronic platform has been developed to guarantee staffs of well-qualified dialysis experts. This present survey aims to assess the adherence to e-learning by a specialized haemodialysis staff of nurses in three Dialysis Clinics in north of Portugal, throughout the last triennium. In accordance with the stated objectives and relevant literature, this study tested two hypotheses. H0: Nurses’ behavioural intention to use e-learning is affected by their perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, e-learning self-efficacy, subjective norm, and system accessibility. H1: Nurses’ e-learning attitude is affected by their e-learning self-efficacy and subjective norm as self-improver and promoter skills, categorising e-learning as a predictor of caregivers’ achievement. The research method used is an adapted theoretical model from one of the well-known models of technology acceptance and use, i.e. the technology acceptance model [TAM], developed by Davis in 1986. This model has proven to be a theoretical model in helping to explain and predict user behaviour of information technology (Legris et al, 2003). TAM provides a basis to find out how external variables influence one’s attitude and intention to use. A relative high value of adherence in e-learning platform was evaluated within the network of Portuguese dialysis clinics. Management in weblog showed high scores of outcomes in all specialized nurses team. The level of utilization predicted a productive environment that combined knowledge, expertise and previous experiences among a cohesive nurses taskforce. Similar to earlier studies, this survey confirmed TAM to be a useful theoretical model in helping to understand and explain behavioural intention to use e-learning. Results of the present research led to the conclusion that the used model reflects the collected data according to the result of goodness-of-fit test and both of the research hypothesis were accepted. One interesting result of the study is that both e-learning self-efficacy and subjective norm play an important role in affecting attitude towards e-learning and behavioural intention to use e-learning. A possible explanation may be justified by the Motivational Theory. These findings can be used for the development and management of e-learning in healthcare. The Subjective norm is the second most important construct affecting both behavioural intention and attitude towards e-learning that sets the intrinsic characteristic of the sample (predictor of caregivers achievement) with high correlation. We therefore conclude that there is a productive environment combining knowledge, expertise, and experience among the study population. Finally, we can confirm that e-learning allows for changes in educational paradigms and behaviours creating a new culture regarding learning and implementation of technological advancements in nursing education.