Communication and Diagnostic Work in Medical Emergency Calls in Italy
This study analyses a series of emergency calls related to the same event: an accident in a factory. The aim of the analysis is to show how a lack of information hinders operator’s diagnostic work. The paper shows the effects of communication problems on operator’s decision making, that is, how the operator’s diagnostic work is actively resisted by callers, and therefore, how disaligment in relation to the activity at hand influences operator’s decision making and the actual organisation of the rescue activities. I argue that CSCW technologies need to enable negotiation of potentially conflicting social practices and organizational protocols around diagnostic work and should not just support remote collaboration between professionals, but also with the public.