Interoperability in hospital information systems: a return-on-investment study comparing CPOE with and without laboratory integration

Stud Health Technol Inform. 2011:169:320-4.


Despite its many advantages, using a computerized patient record is still considered as a time consuming activity for care providers. In numerous situations, time is wasted because of the lack of interoperability between systems. In this study, we aim to assess the time gains that nursing teams could achieve with a tightly integrated computerized order entry system. Using a time-motion method, we compared expected versus effective time spent managing laboratory orders for two different computerized systems: one integrated, the other not integrated. Our results tend to show that nurses will complete their task an average of five times faster than their expected performance (p<0.001). We also showed that a tightly integrated system provides a threefold speed gain for nurses compared to a non-integrated CPOE with the laboratory information system (p<0.001). We evaluated the economic benefit of this gain, therefore arguing for a strong interoperability of systems, in addition to patient safety benefits.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Laboratory Information Systems*
  • Decision Support Systems, Clinical
  • Hospital Information Systems*
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Medical Informatics / methods*
  • Medical Order Entry Systems*
  • Medical Records Systems, Computerized
  • Software
  • Systems Integration
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Time Factors
  • Workflow