Dear Colleague,

We invite you to participate in "IT in Health Care: Socio-technical
Approaches, Second International Conference," September 13-14, 2004, in
Portland, Oregon. Details of the conference and abstract submission
process are now available on the conference website:
http://www.ohsu.edu/dmice/ithc2004.

Please share this message with anyone who you think may be interested;
our apologies if you 
receive multiple copies.


Paul Gorman and Jos Aarts, Co-Chairs
for the ITHC 2004 Organizing Committee

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                                  Call for Participation

We invite you to participate in "IT in Health Care: Socio-technical
Approaches, Second International Conference," September 13-14, 2004, in
Portland, Oregon. Building on the successes of the first ITHC conference
in Rotterdam in September, 2001, ITHC 2004 will again focus on the
complex interaction of the social and technical aspects of information
system design, implementation, and evolution in health care. The
conference is hosted by the Department of Medical Informatics and
Clinical Epidemiology at Oregon Health & Science University, and takes
place immediately following MEDINFO 2004.

The aim of the conference is to bring together investigators from
diverse fields concerned with the interaction and interdependence of
information technologies and the social and work contexts within which
they are deployed. The conference will be of modest size to promote
informal interchange among participants, in addition to the plenary
speakers and formal paper presentations that are scheduled. Selected
papers from the conference are to be published in a special issue of the
International Journal of Medical Informatics.

The first ITHC conference in Rotterdam focused on 'sociotechnical'
approaches: "approaches that consider 'social' and 'technical' aspects
as inextricably intertwined, and as equally important in information
systems design, implementation and evaluation." In the second we hope to
extend this theme with a focus on the system, and how safety, among
other things, is an emergent property of the system as a whole. The
conference theme "To Err is System" is thus intended to reflect three
differing perspectives:

1.  The pervasive view that technological failures are due to
technological system issues - "if, only we had had the latest version,
higher bandwidth, a better systems"

2.  The socio-technical perception that health informatics is fraught
with difficulties due to a lack of awareness and understanding of the
socio-cultural environment in which such applications are implemented;

3.  The systems view that health care is produced through interaction of
the people, technologies, and processes of care, and that changes in one
of these elements produce further, sometimes unexpected, changes in the
other elements or in their interactions.

Key Dates

Deadline for submission abstracts     16 February 2004
Notification of acceptance            12 April    2004
Deadline for final papers              2 August   2004

More information at http://www.ohsu.edu/dmice/ithc2004.


Endorsed by

American Medical Informatics Association
People and Organizational Issues Working Group, Kimberly Harris, Chair

International Medical Informatics Association,
Working Group 13: Organizational and Social Issues, Bonnie Kaplan, Chair

European Federation for Medical Informatics
Working Group on Organisational Impact in Medical Informatics, Jos
Aarts, Chair