Assessment of innovative emergency department information displays in a clinical simulation center

Nicolette McGeorge*, Sudeep Hegde, Rebecca L. Berg, Theresa K. Guarrera-Schick, David T. LaVergne, Sabrina N. Casucci, A. Zachary Hettinger, Lindsey N. Clark, Li Lin, Rollin J. Fairbanks, Natalie C. Benda, Longsheng Sun, Robert L. Wears, Shawna Perry, Ann Bisantz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this work was to assess the functional utility of new display concepts for an emergency department information system created using cognitive systems engineering methods, by comparing them to similar displays currently in use. The display concepts were compared to standard displays in a clinical simulation study during which nurse-physician teams performed simulated emergency department tasks. Questionnaires were used to assess the cognitive support provided by the displays, participants' level of situation awareness, and participants' workload during the simulated tasks. Participants rated the new displays significantly higher than the control displays in terms of cognitive support. There was no significant difference in workload scores between the display conditions. There was no main effect of display type on situation awareness, but there was a significant interaction; participants using the new displays showed improved situation awareness from the middle to the end of the session. This study demonstrates that cognitive systems engineering methods can be used to create innovative displays that better support emergency medicine tasks, without increasing workload, compared to more standard displays. These methods provide a means to develop emergency department information systems - and more broadly, health information technology - that better support the cognitive needs of healthcare providers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-346
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • cognitive systems engineering
  • design evaluation
  • healthcare delivery
  • human in the loop simulation


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