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Keywords

Computerized processes, Delphi technique, Information systems, Mass-casualty incidents

 

Authors

  1. CULLEY, JOAN M. PhD, MPH, RN, CWOCN

Abstract

Since the original work on the Delphi technique, multiple versions have been developed and used in research and industry; however, very little empirical research has been conducted that evaluates the efficacy of using online computer, Internet, and e-mail applications to facilitate a Delphi method that can be used to validate theoretical models. The purpose of this research was to develop computer, Internet, and e-mail applications to facilitate a modified Delphi technique through which experts provide validation for a proposed conceptual model that describes the information needs for a mass-casualty continuum of care. Extant literature and existing theoretical models provided the basis for model development. Two rounds of the Delphi process were needed to satisfy the criteria for consensus and/or stability related to the constructs, relationships, and indicators in the model. The majority of experts rated the online processes favorably (mean of 6.1 on a seven-point scale). Using online Internet and computer applications to facilitate a modified Delphi process offers much promise for future research involving model building or validation. The online Delphi process provided an effective methodology for identifying and describing the complex series of events and contextual factors that influence the way we respond to disasters.