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J Am Med Inform Assoc. 1996 Jan-Feb;3(1):42-55.

Implementation of physician order entry: user satisfaction and self-reported usage patterns.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA.



To evaluate user satisfaction, correlates of satisfaction, and self-reported usage patterns regarding physician order entry (POE) in one hospital.


Surveys were sent to physician and nurse POE users from medical and surgical services.


The users were generally satisfied with POE (mean = 5.07 on a 1 to 7 scale). The physicians were more satisfied than the nurses, and the medical staff were more satisfied than the surgical staff; satisfaction levels were acceptable (more than 3.50) even in the less satisfied groups. Satisfaction was highly correlated with perceptions about POE's effects on productivity, ease of use, and speed. POE features directed at improving the quality of care were less strongly correlated with satisfaction. The physicians valued POE's off-floor accessibility most, and the nurses valued legibility and accuracy of POE orders most. Some features, such as off-floor ordering, were perceived to be highly useful and reported to be frequently used by the physicians; while other features, such as "quick mode'' ordering and personal order sets, received little self-reported use.


Survey of POE users showed that satisfaction with POE was good. Satisfaction was more correlated with perceptions about POE's effect on productivity than with POE's effect on quality of care. Physicians and nurses constitute two very different types of users, underscoring the importance of involving both physicians and nonphysicians in POE development. The results suggest that development efforts should focus on improving system speed, adding on-line help, and emphasizing quality benefits of POE.

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