Clinicians create own customized alerts with new CDS tool

A new approach to clinical decision support (CDS) will allow physicians and others to craft their own CDS rules based on their personal experiences with patients, according to an April 13 announcement from the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University.

The approach, called Rule Authoring and Validation Environment, or RAVE, was developed by the Regenstrief Institute and tested at Eskenazi Health; it is being presented at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society's annual conference in Chicago this week.

RAVE enables any clinician with authorized access to an electronic health record system to quickly write CDS rules that embed the clinician's own thinking into the computer system so it's passed on automatically to other system users. For instance, the clinician can create a high priority pop-up alert or a low priority one; an alert can be customized for just one patient or created broadly for all of them. Computer programing experience is not needed. Moreover, the approach includes its own "checks and balances" system, such as required evaluation and testing before deployment. 

The approach eliminates the need for clinicians to get specific reminders or warnings added to the EHR by others, which can be a lengthy process.

"With the introduction of RAVE's distributed approach to clinician decision support rule writing we are incentivizing creativity from the bottom up--something which isn't typically done in healthcare," Titus Schleyer, director of the Institute's Center for Biomedical Informatics and professor at the Indiana University School of Medicine, said in the announcement. "We have developed an organizational and technical approach to put rule authoring capability directly into the hands of motivated clinicians--partially turning the typical balance of power regarding how EMRs function upside down."

CDS tools are known to improve patient care--when used correctly. Alert overload or poorly designed alerts can be detrimental to patient safety, FierceEMR has previously reported.

However, redesigned and more customized alerts appear to be more effective.

To learn more:
- read the announcement