Developing a Diabetes Discharge Order Set for Patients With Diabetes on Insulin

Elizabeth Miles, Melissa McKnight, Claire C. Schmitz, Chelsea R. McElroy, Jana L. Wardian, Valerie Shostrom, Preethi Polavarapu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Insulin, a high-risk medication, is prone to prescribing errors. Patients with diabetes experience higher hospitalization rates and extended hospital stays. Prescription errors, such as missing orders, inappropriate insulin type, missing instructions, and lack of appropriate intensification of insulin regimens are common issues. This project explored the use of system-based interventions and educational tools to minimize errors and improve the quality of insulin discharge regimens. Methods: A needs assessment and baseline chart review were conducted before adapting a diabetes order set obtained from the University of California, San Diego. Subsequent beta testing and broader implementation were followed by repeat chart reviews to assess the impact. Results: Providers strongly desired an insulin discharge order set, with 98% of those surveyed expressing this preference. Those who were high utilizers of the order set showed increased rates of ordering all supplies (55%), compared with pre-intervention rates (27%). However, no change was observed in the practice of intensifying insulin regimens in patients with uncontrolled diabetes upon discharge. Discussion: Insulin prescribing is prone to error. A diabetes discharge order set may improve the percentage of patients who receive necessary insulin supplies at discharge and provide educational resources to encourage appropriate insulin regimens at hospital discharge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Diabetes Science and Technology
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • diabetes mellitus
  • diabetes order set
  • insulin
  • patient safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering


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