J Am Med Inform Assoc 13:267-276 doi:10.1197/jamia.M1992
  • The Practice of Informatics
  • Review Paper

A Systematic Review of the Literature on Multidisciplinary Rounds to Design Information Technology

  1. Ayse P Gurses,
  2. Yan Xiao
  1. Affiliation of the authors: Department of Anesthesiology and Program in Trauma, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD
  1. Correspondence and reprints: Ayse P. Gurses, PhD, Human Factors & Technology Research Group, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 685 West Baltimore Street, MSTF 5-34, Baltimore, MD 21201; e-mail: <agurs001{at}>
  • Received 19 October 2005
  • Accepted 2 February 2006


Multidisciplinary rounds (MDR) have become important mechanisms for communication and coordination of care. To guide design of tools supporting MDR, we reviewed the literature published from 1990 to 2005 about MDR on information tools used, information needs, impact of information tools, and evaluation measures. Fifty-one papers met inclusion criteria and were included. In addition to patient-centric information tools (e.g., medical chart) and decision-support tools (e.g., clinical pathway), process-oriented tools (e.g., rounding list) were reported to help with information organization and communication. Information tools were shown to improve situation awareness of multidisciplinary care providers, efficiency of MDR, and length of stay. Communication through MDR may be improved by process-oriented information tools that help information organization, communication, and work management, which could be achieved through automatic extraction from clinical information systems, displays and printouts in condensed forms, at-a-glance representations of the care unit, and storing work-process information temporarily.


  • This work was funded by the National Science Foundation (IIS-0325087 and 0534646) and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (HS11562).

  • The authors thank Drs. Grant V. Bochicchio and Vinay Vaidya for sharing their feedback on an early version of the paper.

  • Opinions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official positions of the sponsors.

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