Most standard bedside monitors in critical care settings display multiple clinical parameters and do not provide directional signaling to alert clinicians to relevant changes in physiologic parameters. The complexity of information may delay identification of clinical changes and initiation of interventions. Clinical decision support system (CDSS) tools can present information at appropriate intervals in formats that may enhance clinical decision making.


A 2-group, quasi-experimental design compared the effects of 2 different monitor displays on time required for nurses to recognize and initiate treatment of sepsis in response to a computer simulation.


A convenience sample of 75 critical care nurses was randomly assigned to a standard or an enhanced bedside monitor (EBM) display during a computer-simulated sepsis scenario. Time to recognize symptoms and initiate treatment of sepsis was analyzed between the 2 displays.


Time to recognize symptoms and initiate sepsis treatment was significantly shorter for nurses exposed to the enhanced bedside monitor.


CDSS tools such as EBM may improve nurses’ time to recognize and initiate treatment of sepsis.

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