Effectively delivering clinical decision support (CDS) interventions to the point of care has proven to be a significant challenge for many hospitals and health systems. These projects often fail to drive meaningful improvements and, in some cases, make matters worse. One study found that clinicians ignore EHR safety notifications between 49 percent and 96 percent of the time, primarily due to alert fatigue. Another found a strong association between low perceived value of alerts, clinician dissatisfaction and, subsequently, clinician burnout and turnover.

To succeed in utilizing CDS to improve outcomes, a healthcare organization must apply the CDS Five Rights model as outlined by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, which calls for delivering:

  1. The right information,
  2. To the right person,
  3. In the right intervention format,
  4. Through the right channel,
  5. At the right time in the workflow.

As with many things in healthcare, though, meeting these standards is easier said than done.

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