The objective is to determine the extent to which information systems (IS) for cancer are unique and necessary. Via an analysis of Medical Subject Headings used to index relevant literature and other bibliometric techniques, cancer IS are compared and contrasted with IS of other specialties. Cancer IS are relatively little discussed and primarily connect radiation equipment with the radiation oncology staff. By contrast, clinical laboratory and radiology IS are frequently discussed and connect specialized equipment to the hospital. A "Specialty Need" model accounts for these patterns and says that the "need for a specialty IS" is proportional to the "uniqueness of the specialty tools" plus the "degree to which the information from those tools is needed throughout the particular health care entity."
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