Knowledge management in health organizations

Shemy Carasso, Tzur Arbiv, Ishai Yariv, Erez On, Isaac Ashkenazi, Hezi Levi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: In 2002 the head of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Technology and Logistics Command took a strategic decision to manage knowledge across the organization. The IDF Medical Corps was one of the initiation sites selected. Insights from the process of establishment of a knowledge management (KM) system in the IDF Medical Corps as a health organization (HO) are described. Methods: IDF's medical services were identified, mapped and their participants interviewed, as were KM personnel in Israeli HOs. Information analysis pointed to the medical rendezvous (MR) as the central process for initiation of KM. The knowledge challenges were identified, and knowledge services and administrative interventions were planned. Results including KM challenges and response: The MR was found to be the process in which most of the clinically and administratively significant decisions in HO's were taken. Practitioners had large clinical and administrative knowledge gaps. Medical and administrative knowledge originated from various sources, in many formats. It could not be retrieved either easily or completely, was usually presented in an inconvenient form for assimilation, and was not always updated. Therefore, the MR was selected as the initial intervention point. Optimally, a comprehensive solution providing access to high quality knowledge can be a knowledge portal, including diagnostic indexing as a key for retrieval of information. Furthermore, indexed clinical, administrative, services list, quality assurance, risk management, and continuing medical education knowledge services, as well as a collegial and administrative feedback, link all entities involved into a knowledge community. This may increase the opportunity for optimal and efficient managed care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)474-479
Number of pages6
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Decision making
  • Health organization
  • Informatics
  • Knowledge management
  • Managed care


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