During a period of care in any health setting, patients can be treated by a number of health professionals and they can be moved from one place to another for the purpose of various activities like investigations, treatment and other aspects of care. These activities of care get…
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munication between units and members of health care teams at various junctures of care like admission from primary care, handover from one nurse to another during nursing shift change and shift from one area of care to another area of care, physician treating to physician covering, etc. For nursing profession, change of shift report is an unique feature and involves transfer of information between nurses for the promotion of patient safety and best pratices (Caruso, 2007). According to Riegel (1985; cited in Caruso, 2007), shift report among nurses "is a system of nurse-to-nurse communication between shift changes intended to transfer essential information for safe, holistic care of patients." Deficiencies in hand-over information can lead to severe consequences like breakdowns in continuity of care, inadequate treatment and harm to the patient (DeJohn, 2009). Thus, hand-over communication is very essential for holistic, timely and effective management of any patient in any health care setting. There are several methods of providing hand-off information. Of these, traditional shift hand off is the most commonly employed strategy for transfer of information (DeJohn, 2009). However, some researchers argue that bedside reporting, wherein the hand-off information is provided besides the bed of the patient is a better communication strategy in terms of patient safety and continuum of care (Laws and Amato, 2010). According to Bourne (2000, cited in Caruso, 2007), nurse-to-nurse bedside reporting caused "(a) patient empowerment, (b) patient involvement, and (c) patient becoming an additional resource in diagnosis and treatment." Cahill (1998) reported that in his study, patients expressed that they be included in bedside reporting as their clinical condition improved and that they believed that bedside reporting ensured professional and safe transition of care of patient from one nurse to another.
Which of the two types of hand-off communication is better can be ...
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