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Computerized Provider Order Entry in Examples

The digital transformation of the healthcare sector has led to the emergence of information technologies such as computerized provider order entry (CPOE). The system development has been supported by federal funding which has focused on improving information technology in the healthcare sector. A majority of hospital networks utilize CPOE for their clinical practice. CPOE inherently describes any computerized system which clinicians utilize to place orders for treatment, laboratory or diagnostic tests, and medications.

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CPOE carries numerous benefits and improves the quality of care by creating efficiency, increasing the speed of delivery, and reducing error in the process of prescribing and administering tests or medications (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 2018). The importance of CPOE in clinical practice makes it a primary information technology for adoption and implementation. This paper will describe an example of CPOE technology and discuss a personal example.


The fundamental concept of CPOE is the process of entering and sending orders and treatment instructions through a computer program instead of traditional methods of written notes or telephone. The technology carries numerous benefits in practically all areas of clinical practice where order entry may be required. CPOE reduces errors by producing a standardized template that ensures legibility, uniformity, and completeness of the information.

Furthermore, CPOE often includes clinical decision support which verifies and scans the information for any potential drug interactions or allergies. CPOE improves efficiency by enhancing the speed of order delivery and digitized entry which saves time for pharmacists and laboratory technicians. Finally, CPOE has been associated with improved reimbursements due to the system’s effective management of pre-approval conditions which help to mitigate denied insurance claims (HealthIT, 2018).

Medication errors such as inappropriate drug dosages are often serious issues in medical facilities, causing adverse drug events. Desmedt et al. (2016) investigated the use of CPOE systems in patients with renal failure which are strongly affected by any potential drug-related errors. While clinical pharmacists can often mitigate the issue, many wards do not have a dedicated professional. Therefore, with the help of CPOE, the quality of prescriptions is improved through the use of specific algorithms.

These can guide physicians in dosage prescriptions and drug interactions. A decrease of upward 70% in inappropriate prescriptions was measured in the trial with the use of CPOE to target drug prescriptions (Desmedt et al., 2016). Modern CPOE software is often integrated with clinical decision support systems (CDSS) that provide further systematic processes and designed order sets to the whole component. CDSS essentially provides general guidance on medication dosage and recommendations for complex patients such as those with renal failure or needing insulin. CDSS complements CPOE by ensuring completeness of orders, improved scheduling, and rationing, as well as higher quality interventions (Khanna & Yen, 2014).

Personal Experience

In my professional practice, I have and continue to use CPOE software. In the hospital where I am employed, CPOE is actively implemented along with other digital systems such as electronic health records and clinical decision support systems. CPOE is required for any order entries regarding diagnostic tests, laboratory analyses, and medication prescriptions. The use of CPOE has proven very helpful in managing order entries that would otherwise be done on paper, often creating various issues and misunderstandings. The optimization and technological capabilities of CPOE are helpful to nurses who are often strained for time. Furthermore, it is appealing to the younger generation of medical professionals that strongly believe in the digitalization of the healthcare industry.

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The primary benefit of CPOE is its structure which leaves little room for human error and provides guidance to the process of filling out order entries. Even beginners quickly adapt to the system. The extent of information that it asks for helps maintain a clear and comprehensive view of the patient profile and treatment, which is beneficial in assigning any potential tests and medications. The alert system with the help of clinical decision support has helped numerous times with medication interactions or repeating diagnostic tests. While maintaining a range of benefits, the CPOE design also has negative factors.

For example, its rigid system does not allow ordering certain medications or tests unless a patient is fully admitted or causing a significant delay. Dosage options for medications can be limited, including only standard pharmaceutical prescriptions. Finally, there may be some confusion and overlap between the digital forms and paper trails that many physicians continue to use, the consequence of which may be overdosing.


The CPOE information technology system is a digitally advanced method for medical professionals to fill out orders for medications and diagnostic tests. It is structured and efficient, helping to address various problems of traditional paper orders. Furthermore, it contributes to saved time, costs, and labor hours. The purpose of this report was to investigate an example of CPOE and relay the personal experience of using the system. With this information, one can understand the importance of widespread CPOE implementation for the benefit of patients and the improvement of healthcare delivery. However, the system requires further development and testing to become optimal and be able to adapt to various situations which may arise in medical care.


Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2018). Computerized provider order entry. Web.

Desmedt, S., Spinewine, A., Jadoul, M., Henrard, S., Wouters, D., & Dalleur, O. (2018). Impact of a clinical decision support system for drug dosage in patients with renal failure. International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy, 40(5), 1225-1233. Web.

HealthIT. (2018). What is computerized provider order entry? Web.

Khanna, R., & Yen, T. (2014). Computerized physician order entry: promise, perils, and experience. The Neurohospitalist, 4(1), 26-33.

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