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Ending 40 Years of CPOE Frustration

April 2011
Health IT Exchange

For 40 years, hospitals have been trying to shove computerized physician order entry (CPOE) down physicians’ throats, and for 40 years physician adoption has been abysmal. According to KLAS’s 2010 survey, less than one-sixth of U.S. hospitals are doing even a nominal amount of CPOE with commercial software, and less than six percent of hospitals have all their physicians using a CPOE system (most of these have lots of residents to help out).

One of the biggest reasons for the failure of most CPOE systems to date is that they were designed from the hospital perspective out to physicians, rather than from the physician’s perspective in to the hospital.  Most CPOE systems are modules of a hospital information system and, for the most part, force the vernacular and constructs of the hospital order processing infrastructure onto their physicians.  If you couple this with the fairly strict requirement that most of these systems impose to standardize all orders (rather than just evidence-driven ones), you can quickly get a system that requires physicians to spend more time ordering with CPOE than using paper.

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