Mandatory Use of CPOE Prevents Blood Clots

Cheryl Clark, October 16, 2012

An effort to force Johns Hopkins doctors to order appropriate treatment to prevent venous thromboembolism or blood clots in their trauma patients has paid off, with more patients getting appropriate medications and fewer patients developing potentially lethal clots.

That's according to a report in the Archives of Surgery by Elliott Haut, MD, associate professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and colleagues, including Peter Pronovost, MD.

A VTE-programmed computerized physician order entry (CPOE) system "allowed the use of appropriate prophylaxis in patients who did not have a contraindication to these medications to jump up significantly" over the three-year study period, Haut says. Additionally, fewer patients actually developed pulmonary emboli, in which a blood clot found its way to a patient's lung.

The researchers found that after the CPOE system was implemented, there was a 36% relative risk reduction in VTE events and an 83% relative risk reduction in preventable harm, defined as VTE events occurring in patients not ordered appropriate prophylaxis."

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