Implementing computerized physician order entry: the importance of special people

Int J Med Inform. 2003 Mar;69(2-3):235-50. doi: 10.1016/s1386-5056(02)00107-7.


Objective: To articulate important lessons learned during a study to identify success factors for implementing computerized physician order entry (CPOE) in inpatient and outpatient settings.

Design: Qualitative study by a multidisciplinary team using data from observation, focus groups, and both formal and informal interviews. Data were analyzed using a grounded approach to develop a taxonomy of patterns and themes from the transcripts and field notes.

Results: The theme we call Special People is explored here in detail. A taxonomy of types of Special People includes administrative leaders, clinical leaders (champions, opinion leaders, and curmudgeons), and bridgers or support staff who interface directly with users.

Conclusion: The recognition and nurturing of Special People should be among the highest priorities of those implementing computerized physician order entry. Their education and training must be a goal of teaching programs in health administration and medical informatics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Focus Groups
  • Health Personnel*
  • Hospital Administration*
  • Hospital Information Systems / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Medical Informatics Applications
  • Medical Records Systems, Computerized / organization & administration*
  • Organizational Culture
  • Physicians