OBJECTIVE: To present a computerized intensive care unit order-writing protocol. DESIGN: Descriptive report. SETTING: Eight-bed surgical intensive care unit, Department of Surgery, Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Bronx, NY. METHODS: IBM-based, computer network program that provides user-friendly, logical, and comprehensive organ-system order sequences for patient management. RESULTS: Since July 1988, an order program that stresses (1) improved and more efficient patient care, (2) the use of program-integrated automatic safety features, (3) the substitution of computer entry for handwriting, and (4) the assurance that physicians deliver obligatory care in a logical organ-system—based progression has been implemented. The order protocol system presented is simple to introduce and operate, has minimal training and technical requirements, and is demonstrably reliable.