In search of common ground in handoff documentation in an Intensive Care Unit. Academic Article uri icon

Overview

MeSH

  • Communication
  • Humans
  • Nurses

MeSH Major

  • Continuity of Patient Care
  • Documentation
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Patient Transfer

abstract

  • Handoff is an intra-disciplinary process, yet the flow of critical handoff information spans multiple disciplines. Understanding this information flow is important for the development of computer-based tools that supports the communication and coordination of patient care in a multi-disciplinary and highly specialized critical care setting. We aimed to understand the structure, functionality, and content of nurses' and physicians' handoff artifacts. We analyzed 22 nurses' and physicians' handoff artifacts from a Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU) at a large urban medical center. We combined artifact analysis with semantic coding based on our published Interdisciplinary Handoff Information Coding (IHIC) framework for a novel two-step data analysis approach. We found a high degree of structure and overlap in the content of nursing and physician artifacts. Our findings demonstrated a non-technical, yet sophisticated, system with a high degree of structure for the organization and communication of patient data that functions to coordinate the work of multiple disciplines in a highly specialized unit of patient care. This study took place in one CTICU. Further work is needed to determine the generalizability of the results. Our findings indicate that the development of semi-structured patient-centered interdisciplinary handoff tools with discipline specific views customized for specialty settings may effectively support handoff communication and patient safety. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

publication date

  • April 2012

has subject area

  • Communication
  • Continuity of Patient Care
  • Documentation
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Nurses
  • Patient Transfer

Research

keywords

  • Journal Article

Identity

Language

  • eng

PubMed Central ID

  • PMC3306473

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.jbi.2011.11.007

PubMed ID

  • 22142947

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 307

end page

  • 315

volume

  • 45

number

  • 2