Analysis of Daily Laboratory Orders at a Large Urban Academic Center

Joseph W. Rudolf, Anand S. Dighe, Christopher M. Coley, Irina K. Kamis, Bradley M. Wertheim, Douglas E. Wright, Kent B. Lewandrowski, Jason M. Baron

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Objectives We sought to address concerns regarding recurring inpatient laboratory test order practices (daily laboratory tests) through a multifaceted approach to changing ordering patterns. Methods We engaged in an interdepartmental collaboration to foster mindful test ordering through clinical policy creation, electronic clinical decision support, and continuous auditing and feedback. Results Annualized daily order volumes decreased from approximately 25,000 to 10,000 during a 33-month postintervention review. This represented a significant change from preintervention order volumes (95% confidence interval, 0.61-0.64; P < 10-16). Total inpatient test volumes were not affected. Conclusions Durable changes to inpatient order practices can be achieved through a collaborative approach to utilization management that includes shared responsibility for establishing clinical guidelines and electronic decision support. Our experience suggests auditing and continued feedback are additional crucial components to changing ordering behavior. Curtailing daily orders alone may not be a sufficient strategy to reduce in-laboratory costs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-135
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of clinical pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Society for Clinical Pathology. All rights reserved.


  • Clinical decision support
  • Daily laboratory orders
  • Utilization management


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