Objective: The purpose of this study was to identify barriers and facilitators influencing the implementation of an interactive Internet-portal application for patient education in psychiatric hospitals. Methods: The data were collected from nurses by means of a questionnaire with thematic open-ended questions. The data was analysed using qualitative content analysis. Results: Four main categories were formed to describe barriers and facilitators of portal implementation in psychiatric wards. These categories were organisational resources, nurses' individual characteristics, patient-related factors and portal-related factors. Some major barriers were identified restricting the use of the portal in patient education: lack of computers, lack of time for patients, nurses' negative attitudes towards computer use and lack of education. The main facilitators for portal use were appropriate technological resources, easy Internet access, enough time for portal use, and level of motivation among staff to use computers. Conclusion: The specific challenge in achieving patient education with the computer in psychiatric care is to ensure technological resources and that the staff are motivated to use computers. At the same time, attention should be paid the relationship between patient and nurse. Practice Implications: It is important to examine the patient-nurse relationship in the education process and also to define the usability of the application from the patients' point of view. © 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
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