Some unintended consequences of clinical decision support systems.

Joan S. Ash, Dean F. Sittig, Emily M. Campbell, Kenneth P. Guappone, Richard H. Dykstra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

246 Scopus citations


Clinical decision support systems (CDS) coupled with computerized physician/provider order entry (CPOE) can improve the quality of patient care and the efficiency of hospital operations. However, they can also produce unintended consequences. Using qualitative methods, a multidisciplinary team gathered and analyzed data about the unintended consequences of CPOE, identifying nine types, and found that CDS-generated unintended consequences appeared among all types. Further analysis of 47 CDS examples uncovered three themes related to CDS content: elimination or shifting of human roles; difficulty in keeping content current; and inappropriate content. Three additional themes related to CDS presentation were found: rigidity of the system; alert fatigue; and potential for errors. Management of CDS must include careful selection and maintenance of content and prudent decision making about human computer interaction opportunities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-30
Number of pages5
JournalAMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium
StatePublished - 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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