Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Coping with different roles in intensive care nursing: design implications for digital support
  1. Marijke Melles1,
  2. Adinda Freudenthal1,
  3. Addie Bouwman2,
  4. Chris Snijders1,
  5. Huib de Ridder1
  1. 1Department of Industrial Design, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Nursing Affairs, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Marijke Melles, Department of Industrial Design, Delft University of Technology, Landbergstraat 15, Delft 2628 CE, The Netherlands; m.melles{at}


Objectives The aim of this study is to arrive at design implications for the digital support of intensive care nurses, with a focus on supporting them in their roles as practitioners, as scholars and in their human response to their work.

Methods Seventeen nurses from six different Dutch hospitals were interviewed using a newly developed digital prototype designed around these roles. The nurses were questioned about the suitability of four functions: two supporting the practitioner role (‘web of actors’ and ‘timeline and notes’); one supporting the scholar role (‘assessment of the patient’); and one supporting the role of human (‘perception of the shift’). The remarks of the nurses about these functions were grouped by their relevance to design (ie, the perceived added value of the function, suggestions for other uses, and the perceived negative impact of the function) and by topic.

Results A total of 23 topics emerged: nine topics described the added values of the functions, nine were suggestions for other uses, and five concerned the negative impact of the functions as perceived by the participants. The main points of each topic were summarised, resulting in 23 design implications for digital role-based support.

  • Intensive care nursing
  • roles
  • digital support
  • design implications
  • healthcare quality improvement
  • human factors
  • information technology
  • nurses

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Linked Articles

  • Introduction
    Kerm Henriksen Sara Albolino