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Nursing Management

July 2013, Volume 44 Number 7 , p 25 - 28


  • Kristi Olson-Sitki MSN, RN, NE-BC
  • Tina Weitzel MA, RN-BC
  • Deidra Glisson MBA, MSN, RN, NE-BC


Effective communication between caregivers has been identified as essential to patient safety.1,2 In particular, the process for handoff communication between caregivers is recognized by The Joint Commission as a required standard under Provision of Care, Treatment, and Services.2 Bedside report has been implemented in many hospitals in an effort to improve communication between staff, decrease sentinel events caused by miscommunication, and meet The Joint Commission standards.3-5The benefits of bedside reporting include better staff communication about patient care, increased teamwork, improvement of patients' ability to ask questions, and improvement of patient satisfaction and patient adherence with the care plan.3,4,6-8 Benefits to nurses include visualizing and confirming the previous shift's report, obtaining a baseline assessment, improving accountability between shifts, and improving teamwork between staff members.3 We implemented bedside report at our institution, using a standardized educational and competency validation process.Our 500-bed, Magnet(R)-designated Midwestern teaching hospital first began considering a move to bedside report in the fall of 2009. Before then, inpatient nursing units completed shift-to-shift report using cassette tape recorders. The receiving nurse listened to a taped report from the offgoing nurse; oncoming staff members weren't introduced to patients. Patients weren't included in the report process and sometimes verbalized curiosity about the content of reports. Nurses prioritized their work plan based on the taped report. After listening to the recording, nurses began greeting and assessing patients-sometimes it took an hour into the shift before a nurse saw an individual patient for the first time.Nursing staff members perceived several benefits of taped report: Offgoing staff members were able to monitor patients while the taped report was being reviewed and overtime for offgoing staff members was minimized because they were

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