Impact of structured insulin order sets on inpatient hypoglycemia and glycemic control

Maria I. Kravchenko, Joshua M. Tate, Philip G. Clerc, Whitney L. Forbes, Morgan C. Gettle, Jana L. Wardian, Jeffrey A. Colburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective: In hospitalized patients, glycemic excursions outside recommended glycemic targets have been associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Despite recommendations to avoid use of correctional insulin alone for managing hyperglycemia, this approach remains common. We performed a quality improvement project aimed at both reducing hypoglycemic events and promoting increased use of basal insulin by updating our insulin order sets to reflect clinical practice guideline recommendations. Methods: Brooke Army Medical Center correctional insulin order sets were modified to reflect higher treatment thresholds and targets, and a basal insulin order was added with a recommended weight-based starting dose. Pre- and postintervention analyses were performed. Patients were included if they were prescribed subcutaneous insulin during their hospital stay. The following outcomes were measured: (1) glucose levels, and (2) prescriptions for basal insulin. Results: A significant reduction in hypoglycemia events was noted following the intervention (glucose <70 mg/dL: 9.2% pre-intervention vs. 8.8% postintervention; glucose <55 mg/dL: 4.2% pre-intervention vs. 2.2% postintervention). When excluding patients that were ordered correctional insulin alone but did not receive a dose, an increase in basal insulin use was seen (50% preintervention vs. 61% postintervention). Rates and severity of hyperglycemia (glucose >180 mg/dL) remained unchanged. Conclusion: The alteration in insulin order set parameters resulted in a significant reduction in hypoglycemia without significant increases in hyperglycemia. Although basal insulin use increased, optimal dosing recommendations were not often utilized. Further interventions are necessary to reduce hyperglycemia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)523-528
Number of pages6
JournalEndocrine Practice
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of structured insulin order sets on inpatient hypoglycemia and glycemic control'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this