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Structured nursing communication on interdisciplinary acute care teams improves perceptions of safety, efficiency, understanding of care plan and teamwork as well as job satisfaction

Authors Gausvik C, Lautar A, Miller L, Pallerla H, Schlaudecker J

Received 13 August 2014

Accepted for publication 29 September 2014

Published 14 January 2015 Volume 2015:8 Pages 33—37

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JMDH.S72623

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser


Christian Gausvik,1 Ashley Lautar,2 Lisa Miller,2 Harini Pallerla,3 Jeffrey Schlaudecker4,5

1University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, 2The Christ Hospital, Cincinnati, OH, USA; 3Department of Family and Community Medicine, 4Division of Geriatric Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH, USA; 5Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program, University of Cincinnati/The Christ Hospital, Cincinnati, OH, USA

Abstract: Efficient, accurate, and timely communication is required for quality health care and is strongly linked to health care staff job satisfaction. Developing ways to improve communication is key to increasing quality of care, and interdisciplinary care teams allow for improved communication among health care professionals. This study examines the patient- and family-centered use of structured interdisciplinary bedside rounds (SIBR) on an acute care for the elderly (ACE) unit in a 555-bed metropolitan community hospital. This mixed methods study surveyed 24 nurses, therapists, patient care assistants, and social workers to measure perceptions of teamwork, communication, understanding of the plan for the day, safety, efficiency, and job satisfaction. A similar survey was administered to a control group of 38 of the same staff categories on different units in the same hospital. The control group units utilized traditional physician-centric rounding. Significant differences were found in each category between the SIBR staff on the ACE unit and the control staff. Nurse job satisfaction is an important marker of retention and recruitment, and improved communication may be an important aspect of increasing this satisfaction. Furthermore, improved communication is key to maintaining a safe hospital environment with quality patient care. Interdisciplinary team rounds that take place at the bedside improve both nursing satisfaction and related communication markers of quality and safety, and may help to achieve higher nurse retention and safer patient care. These results point to the interconnectedness and dual benefit to both job satisfaction and patient quality of care that can come from enhancements to team communication.

Keywords: interprofessional teams, patient- and family-centered care, structured interdisciplinary bedside rounds, ACE unit, health care teams

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