Dr. Burton "Bud" Rose died April 24 due to complications from COVID-19. Rose was best known for creating UptoDate, one of the world's most widely used clinical reference tools. Rose was 77.
A nephrologist by training, Rose in the early 1990s approached book publishers with the idea of converting his textbook, "Clinical Physiology of Acid-Base and Electrolyte Disorders," into a computer-based resource. When they rejected him, Rose decided to do it on his own.
It wasn't just book publishers who were skeptical though. In a video history of UptoDate, Dr. Ted Post, who at the time was an instructor at Harvard Medical School, recalled that he did not find it "very awe-inspiring" and thought it was "a complete waste of time."
Undaunted, Rose launched UptoDate in 1992 and it soon became a prominent resource for kidney doctors and it began to expand to other specialities. Wolters Kluwer Health bought UptoDate in 2008. Post currently serves as the editor-in-chief.
"Dr. Bud Rose's real genius was to say, 'Instead of writing about a particular disease, let's write about the specific clinical questions that a clinician has, apply the best evidence to answer those questions, and then make very specific recommendations for care,' " Dr. Denise Basow, president & CEO of clinical effectiveness at Wolters Kluwer said in the video, which commemorated UptoDate's 25th anniversary.
UptoDate now includes 25 specialties and has more than 6,000 authors, according the Wolters Kluwer, which claims that 1.9 million clinicians routinely view the site and that 30% of those clinicians change their decisions after reviewing the documentation.