A Case Study In IT Innovation In A Small, Rural Community Hospital

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The United States healthcare industry is one of the most clinically sophisticated and innovative in the world, but has been slow to adopt and innovate in the area of administrative and integrative technology. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems integrate and coordinate an organization's information systems and its business processes, but healthcare has been slow to install such systems. Because research suggests that innovation develops slowly in rural areas and is negatively correlated with size, the adoption and successful use of ERP systems in small to medium sized hospitals is considered to be truly innovative. A brief overview of innovation theory is followed by a more in-depth discussion of the recent literature addressing healthcare and information technology (IT) innovation. The research methodology is then presented followed by the case study, "ERP Innovation at Inter Mountain Regional Medical Center," which presents the case of a small, rural community hospital that has successfully implemented a sophisticated ERP system.