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Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2006 May;17(3):199-206.

The role of computerized order sets in pediatric inpatient asthma treatment.

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Columbus Children's Research Institute, Columbus, OH 43205, USA.


Condition-specific order sets within computerized physician order entry (CPOE) systems are designed to decrease unnecessary practice variation and to promote evidence-based practice. This study quantitatively assessed the relationship between use of a computerized order set and processes of care in inpatient pediatric asthma treatment, and qualitatively assessed user attitudes toward order set use. The study population included 790 patients with a primary diagnosis of asthma admitted to Columbus Children's Hospital between November 1, 2001 and November 30, 2003. Rates of systemic corticosteroid (SCS) use, metered-dose inhaler use, and pulse oximetry (PulseOx) were calculated for three patient groups: those admitted prior to order set implementation ('pre-set'); those admitted after implementation but without the order set used ('no set'); and those admitted after implementation with the order set used ('set'). Financial measures of length of stay, total charges, and pharmacy charges were also calculated. Focus groups exploring attitudes about order sets were held with physician users of order sets. Order set patients were significantly more likely to receive SCS and PulseOx than 'pre-set' and 'no set' patients. 'No set' patients did not differ significantly from 'pre-set' patients. No significant differences were found in financial measures. Results from focus groups suggested that order set use would be optimized by promoting order set awareness and maximizing order set quality. These results give further credence to policy-makers' calls for expanded use of CPOE systems with condition-specific order sets to facilitate provision of evidence-based care.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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