Five Lessons on How to Get Physicians to Adopt CPOE

Carrie Vaughan, for HealthLeaders Media , October 20, 2009

Lesson 4. Provide a private area for physicians to use the system. Rockcastle built a physicians lounge, complete with four computer terminals and a terminal for the PACS system so that doctors would have a private area to enter orders without being interrupted. "We also purchased small computers that they could use at home and that was a benefit that we sold them on because they could access records from home," says Burton.

Lesson 5. Keep the lines of communication open. The physicians at Rockcastle have a monthly meeting that every doctor attends—one of the perks of being a small hospital. Burton would typically sit in on that meeting on a quarterly basis. After the system went live in November, however, she started going every month to assist the doctors, answer questions, or make changes to the CPOE system. By the March, the comments changed from "we can't do this" to "can the system do this," says Burton, adding that that was when she knew she could stop going every month. "They reached the point where they were comfortable with it," she says.

Burton is very happy with her physicians' acceptance of CPOE. "We didn't have anyone pitching fits, stomping, leaving the building. They grumbled, but did it," she says. "We tried to be there and listen and reinforce that we could do it."

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Carrie Vaughan is a senior editor with HealthLeaders magazine. She can be reached at

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