An implementation science framework to develop a clinical decision support tool for familial hypercholesterolemia

Hana Bangash, Laurie Pencille, Justin H. Gundelach, Ahmed Makkawy, Joseph Sutton, Lenae Makkawy, Ozan Dikilitas, Stephen Kopecky, Robert Freimuth, Pedro J. Caraballo, Iftikhar J. Kullo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Electronic health record (EHR)-based clinical decision support (CDS) can address the low awareness and undertreatment of familial hypercholesterolemia (FH), a disorder associated with a markedly increased risk of coronary heart disease. We aimed to incorporate provider perspectives into the development and implementation of a CDS tool for FH. An implementation science framework and a user-centered design process were used to create a CDS tool for FH. Primary care physicians and specialist physicians participated in qualitative interviews, usability testing and an implementation survey. The CDS was configured in two formats—a best practice alert (BPA) and an in-basket message and subsequently deployed in the EHR in silent mode. The key themes that emerged from the analysis of interview transcripts included understanding and awareness of FH, clinical workflow, physician preferences and value of CDS tools, perspectives on patient needs and values and dissemination and implementation. Recommendations related to usability included preferred CDS format and placement, content, timing and frequency, and level of alert urgency/prioritization. In response to the survey, 84.6% of physicians agreed that the CDS would improve early FH diagnosis and 92.3% agreed that it would help them identify and manage FH patients. Physician feedback led to iterative CDS refinement. In summary, we developed a CDS tool for FH using an implementation science framework and physician feedback. Initial deployment revealed a significant burden of FH and the potential for the CDS tool to have a large impact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number67
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Personalized Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • CDS
  • Clinical decision support
  • Electronic health record
  • FH
  • Familial hypercholesterolemia
  • Genomics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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