Advertisement

Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW)

, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 457–481 | Cite as

Knowledge Management in Locating the Patient in an Emergency Medical Service in Italy

  • Fabio DovigoEmail author
  • Ilaria Redaelli
Article

Abstract

This study examines an Emergency Medical Service in order to analyze the composite set of activities and instruments directed at locating the patient. The good management of information about the location of the emergency is highly relevant for a reliable rescue service, but this information depends on knowledge of the territory that is socially distributed between EMS operators and callers. Accordingly, the decision-making process often has to go beyond the emergency service protocols, engaging the operator in undertaking an open negotiation in order to transform the caller’s role from layman to “co-worker”. The patient’s location turns out to be an emerging phenomenon, collaborative work based on knowledge management involving two communities—the callers and the EMS operators—that overlap partially. Drawing examples from emergency calls, the study analyzes the practice of locating a patient as a complex and multi-layered process, highlighting the role played by new and old technologies (the information system and the paper maps) in this activity. We argue that CSCW technologies enable the blended use of different kinds of instruments and support an original interconnection between the professional localization systems and the public’s way of defining a position.

Key words

control room emergency calls ethnography ethnomethodology knowledge management technology blending 

References

  1. Artman, H., & Waern, Y. (1999). Distributed cognition in an emergency co-ordination center. Cognition, Technology and Work, vol.1.Google Scholar
  2. Atkinson, P., Coffey, A., & Delamont, S. (Eds.). (2001). Handbook of ethnography. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  3. Barthes, R. (1970). L’empire des signes. Paris: Skira.Google Scholar
  4. Bentley, R., Hughes, J. A., Randall, D., Rodden, T., Sawyer, P., Shapiro, D., et al. (1992). Ethnographically-informed systems design for air traffic control. In J. Turner, & R. Kraut (eds), CSCW ’92. Proceedings of the conference on computer supported cooperative work, Toronto, Canada, October 31 to November 4, 1992. New York: ACM Press, pp. 123–129.Google Scholar
  5. Bernini, G. (1994). La banca dati del ‘progetto di Pavia’ sull’italiano lingua seconda. Studi Italiani di Linguistica Teorica e Applicata, 23(2), 221–236.Google Scholar
  6. Beynon-Davies, P. (1999). Human error and information system failure: the case of the London Ambulance service computer-aided despatch system project. Interacting with Computers, 11, 699–720.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bloor, M. (2001). The ethnography of healt and medicine. In P. Atkinson, A. Coffey, & S. Delamont (Eds.), Handbook of ethnography. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  8. Boden, D., & Zimmerman, D. H. (Eds.). (1991). Talk and social studies in ethnomethodology and conversation analysis. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  9. Bowers, J. M., Martin, D. (1999). Informing collaborative information visualization through an ethnography of ambulance control. In Bødker S., M. Kyng, & K. Schmidt (Eds.), ECSCW’99 Proceedings of the sixth conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, Copenhagen, Denmark, September 12–16, 1999. Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers, pp 309–330.Google Scholar
  10. Dourish, P. (2001). Where the action is: the foundations of embodied interaction. Cambridge: MIT.Google Scholar
  11. Dourish, P. (2004). What we talk about when we talk about context. Personal and Ubiquitous Computing, 8(1), 19–24. Springer-Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dovigo, F. (2004). Abitare la salute. Franco Angeli: Milano.Google Scholar
  13. Dovigo, F., & Redaelli, I. (2007). Ordinarie emergenze. Milano, Guerini Scientifica.Google Scholar
  14. Duranti, A. (1992). Etnografia del parlare quotidiano. Carocci: Roma.Google Scholar
  15. Earl, M. (2001). Knowledge management strategies: toward a taxonomy. Journal of Management Information System, 18(1), 215–233.Google Scholar
  16. Engeström, Y., & Middleton, D. (Eds.). (1996). Cognition and communication at work. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Finkelstein, A., Dowell, J. (1996). A comedy of errors: the London ambulance service case study. In Proc. 8th International Workshop on Software Specifications & Design IWSSD-8, Los Alamitos, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp. 2–4.Google Scholar
  18. Fitch, K. L., & Sanders, R. E. (Eds.). (2005). Handbook of language and social interaction. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  19. Fitzgerald, G., & Russo, N. L. (2005). The turnaround of the London ambulance service computer-aided despatch system (Lascad). European Journal of Information System, 14(3), 244–257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fitzpatrick, G. (2003). Emergent expertise sharing in a new community. In M. Ackermann, V. Pipek, & V. Wulf (Eds.), Sharing expertise: beyond knowledge management (pp. 81–106). Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  21. Foucault, M. (1998). Eterotopie. In A. Pandolfi (Ed.), Archivio Foucault. Interventi, colloqui, interviste, vol. 3, 1978–85, Estetica dell’esistenza, etica, politica. Milano: Feltrinelli.Google Scholar
  22. Garfinkel, H. (1967). Studies in etnomethodology. Prentice-Hall: Englewoods Cliffs.Google Scholar
  23. Goodwin, C. (1994). Professional vision. American Anthropologist, 96(3), 606–633.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  24. Goodwin, C. (2000). Action and embodied within situated human interaction. Journal of Pragmatics, 32, 1489–1522.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Goodwin, C., & Goodwin, M. H. (1996). Seeing as situated activity: formulating planes. In Y. Engeström & D. Middleton (Eds.), Cognition and communication at work. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Groth, K. (2004). Knowing who knows—an alternative approach to knowledge management, PhD Thesis, Department of Numerical Analysis and Computing Science, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm.Google Scholar
  27. Groth, K., & Bowers, J. (2001). On finding things out: situating organizational knowledge, ECSCW’01, Proceedings of the Seventh European Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work, 16–20 September 2001, Bonn, Germany. Netherland: Kluwer Academic Publishers, pp. 259–278.Google Scholar
  28. Heath, C., & Luff, P. (1992). Collaboration and control: crisis management and multimedia technology in London underground line control rooms. Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), 1, 69–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Heath, C., & Luff, P. (2000). Tecnology in action. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hutchins, E. (2005). Material anchors for conceptual blends. Journal of Pragmatics, 37, 1555–1577.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Landgren, J. (2005). Supporting fire crew sensemaking enroute to incidents. International Journal of Emergency Management, 2(3), 176–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Luff, P., Gilbert, N., & Frohlich, D. (1990). Computer and conversation. London: Academic.Google Scholar
  33. Luff, P., Hindmarsh, J., & Heath, C. (2000). Workplace studies. Recovering work practice and informing system design. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Martin, D., Bowers, J., & Wastell, D. (1997). The interactional affordances of technology: an ethnography of human-computer interaction in an ambulance control centre. In People and Computers XII, Proceedings of HCI'97 (Cambridge).Google Scholar
  35. Martin, D., O’Neill, J., Randall, D., & Rouncefield, M. (2007). How can I help you? Call centres, classification work and coordination. Computer Supported Cooperative Work, 16, 231–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. McCarthy, J., Wright, P., & Cooke, M. (2004). From information processing to dialogical meaning making. Cognition, Technology and Work, 6, 107–116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Münzer, S., Zimmer, H. D., Schwalm, M., Baus, J., & Aslan, I. (2006). Computer-assisted navigation and the acquisition of route and survey knowledge. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 26(4), 300–308.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Normark, M., & Randall, D. (2005). Local expertise at an emergency call center, ECSCW’05 Proceedings of the European Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, Paris, France, 18–22 September 2005, Netherlands, Springer, pp. 247–366.Google Scholar
  39. Paoletti, I. (2009). Communication and diagnostic work in medical emergency calls in Italy. Computer Supported Cooperative Work, 18, 229–250. doi: 10.1007/s10606-009-9091-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Pettersson, M., Randall, D., & Helgeson, B. (2004). Ambiguities, awareness and economy: a study of emergency service work. Computer Supported Cooperative Work, 13, 125–154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Randall, D., O’Brien, J., Rouncefield, M., & J. A. Hughes (1996). Organzational memory and CSCW, conference on HCI (OzCHI ’96), Supporting the ‘Mavis’ Phenomenon. Proceedings of the Sixth Australian Conference on Computer-Human Interaction, 2427 November 1996, Hamilton, New Zealand, Los Alamitos, California, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp. 26–34.Google Scholar
  42. Suchman, L. (1997). Centers of coordination: a case and some themes. In L. B. Resnick, R. Säljö, C. Pontecorvo, & B. Burge (Eds.), Discourse, tools and reasoning: essays on situated cognition. Berlin: Springer.Google Scholar
  43. Suchman, L. (2007). Human-machine reconfigurations: plans and situated actions. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  44. Tjora, A. H. (2001). The tecnological mediation of the nursing-medical boundary. Sociology of Healt & Illness, 22(69), 721–741.Google Scholar
  45. Tracy, K. (1997). Interactional trouble in emergency services request: a problem of frames. Research on Language and Social Interaction, vol.30(4), pp.315–343. doi: 10.1207/s15327973rlsi3004_3.
  46. Turner, B., & Pidgeon, N. (1997). Man-made disasters. Boston: Butterworth-Heinemann.Google Scholar
  47. Tversky, B. (1993) Cognitive maps, cognitive collages, and spatial mental models. In: A. U. Frank, & I. Campari (Eds.), COSIT'93, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 716, 14–24. Springer, Berlin.Google Scholar
  48. Wakin, M. A., & Zimmerman, D. H. (1999). Reduction and specialization in emergency and directory assistance calls. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 32(4), 409–437. doi: 10.1207/S15327973rls3204_4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Wenger, E. (1998). Communities of practice. Learning, Meaning and identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  50. Wenger, E. (2000). Communities of practice and learning systems. Organizations, 7(2), 225–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Whalen, M. R., & Zimmerman, D. H. (1987). Sequential and institutional contexts in calls for help. Social Psycology Quaterly, 50(2), 172–185. doi: 10.2307/2786750.Google Scholar
  52. Whalen, J., & Zimmerman, D. H. (2005). Working a call. Multiparty management and interactional infrastructure. In C. D. Baker, M. Emmison, & A. Firth (Eds.), Calling for help. Language and social interaction in telephone helplines. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.Google Scholar
  53. Zimmerman, D. H. (1992a). The interactional organization of calls for emergency assistance. In P. Drew & J. Heritage (Eds.), Talk at work (pp. 418–469). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.Google Scholar
  54. Zimmerman, D. H. (1992b). Achieving context. Openings in emergency calls. In G. Watson & R. M. Seiler (Eds.), Text in context (pp. 35–51). Newbury Park: Sage.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Università degli Studi di BergamoBergamoItaly

Personalised recommendations