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Fostering Acceptance of Computerized Physician Order Entry: Insights From an Implementation Study

Muslin, Ivan S. PhD; Vardaman, James M. PhD; Cornell, Paul T. PhD

doi: 10.1097/HCM.0000000000000011

Computerized physician order entry (CPOE) allows physicians to enter orders in a computer rather than handwriting them. Computerized physician order entry is touted as a major improvement in patient safety, and although the literature suggests that such systems have the potential to improve patient outcomes, studies also suggest that CPOE may have significant drawbacks that accompany those benefits. Physicians have often been resistant to accept its implementation. This study investigates the implementation of CPOE at a 217-bed rural hospital in the southeastern United States. Drawing on a mixed-method approach, we identify correlates of change acceptance and propose a set of recommendations for health care managers to foster acceptance of CPOE. Findings from physician surveys (n = 19) indicate that older physicians are less accepting of CPOE, but high-quality change communication may overcome resistance even among older physicians. With insights derived from the organizational change literature, findings bring to the fore a set of practices that managers can use to foster acceptance of CPOE. The thrust of these practices is that managers should make physicians active participants in fine-tuning CPOE within the unique needs and constraints of the local hospital setting.

Author Affiliations: Marshall University, Huntington, West Virginia (Dr Muslin); Mississippi State University, Starkville (Dr Vardaman); and Healthcare Practice Transformation, Dallas, Texas (Dr Cornell).

The authors have no conflicts of interest.

Correspondence: Ivan S. Muslin, PhD, Corbly Hall 427, 1 John Marshall Drive, Huntington, WV 25755 (

© 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins