Monday, November 02, 2015

Important if you are hospitalized

Laura Landro, a journalist I respect, writes about "shift change," the time in hospitals when one batch of nurses goes home and another arrives. How do they do the hand-off?

Studies show that discussing each patient at the bedside rather than down at the nurses' station helps nurses communicate better and helps prevent falls and incompatible transfusions and other horrors.

Talking about issues in front of the patient and family is considered a core safety strategy,

Some nurses resist this, saying nearby patients can hear confidential info. But when this is done, patients say who can be in the room and designate things they don't want discussed.

One patient's wife reported that this discussion was the only time she got info on her husband's condition.

With training in this form of shift change, nurses can hand off three to six patients in half an hour.

Patients also like this--one said she could hear nurses and doctors talking outside her room, as if she weren't even there. It made her feel uncomfortable.

I remember a little whiteboard in my hospital rooms--with info on me--but not this sort of changeover.

Good idea.

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