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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Healthcare technologies, quality improvement programs and hospital organizational culture in Canadian hospitals

Rajesh K Tyagi1*, Lori Cook2, John Olson3 and James Belohlav2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Logistics and Operations Management, HEC Montréal, 3000, Chemin de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine, Montréal, Québec H3T 2A7, Canada

2 Department of Management, DePaul University, 1 East Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60604, USA

3 Operations and Supply Chain Management, University of St. Thomas, 2115 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN 55115, USA

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BMC Health Services Research 2013, 13:413  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-13-413

Published: 13 October 2013



Healthcare technology and quality improvement programs have been identified as a means to influence healthcare costs and healthcare quality in Canada. This study seeks to identify whether the ability to implement healthcare technology by a hospital was related to usage of quality improvement programs within the hospital and whether the culture within a hospital plays a role in the adoption of quality improvement programs.


A cross-sectional study of Canadian hospitals was conducted in 2010. The sample consisted of hospital administrators that were selected by provincial review boards. The questionnaire consisted of 3 sections: 20 healthcare technology items, 16 quality improvement program items and 63 culture items.


Rasch model analysis revealed that a hierarchy existed among the healthcare technologies based upon the difficulty of implementation. The results also showed a significant relationship existed between the ability to implement healthcare technologies and the number of quality improvement programs adopted. In addition, culture within a hospital served a mediating role in quality improvement programs adoption.


Healthcare technologies each have different levels of difficulty. As a consequence, hospitals need to understand their current level of capability before selecting a particular technology in order to assess the level of resources needed. Further the usage of quality improvement programs is related to the ability to implement technology and the culture within a hospital.