The purpose of this study was to identify and analyse the US Health Sector concept of the ‘Meaningful Use’ of electronic health records (EHR's) based on the wide diversity of discourses in the published literature. Meaningful Use is defined as ‘use of digital medical and health records to improve quality, safety and efficiency of patient health information’.
Herman Dooyeweerd's philosophical suite of aspects was the chosen research tool used to analyse seminal papers concerning the Meaningful Use of EHRs. The methodology included the identification of the criteria for choosing the papers: application of the criteria to the literature and then selection of the papers and finally the application of Dooyeweerd's aspects to the papers in order to analyse and classify the motivations of the authors.
As a result of the aspectual analysis of the relevant texts in the seminal papers, two aspects were identified, one as primary and another one as secondary. In addition, the analytic aspect was repeated twice as the primary aspect. Although there were a number of papers distinctively centred on different aspects, overlaps and similarities were also clearly identified.
Dooyeweerd's philosophy is useful in helping to affirm the factors that are important to the authors of the seminal papers and the philosophy helps us to accommodate this diversity in a unique way, therefore enhancing our understanding of approaches in the area.
By employing the lens of Dooyeweerd's aspects, the study enhances the understanding of diversity in one discipline and could potentially provide a new system for the classification of diversity within other related disciplines.