The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2009 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

USE OF TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE PATIENT HANDOFF COMMUNICATION

Christopher J. Benitez; Respiratory Care, Primary Childrens Medical Center, Salt Lake City, UT Christopher J Benitez RRT. Primary Childrens Medical Center Salt Lake City Utah

Background: JCAHO 2007 National Patient Safety Goal 2E stressed the importance of implementing a standardized approach to Handoff communication that is accurate and concise. In April 2007 the Primary Children’s Medical Center, Respiratory Care Services, PICU core group questioned the effectiveness of handoff communication between shift caregivers. At this time handoff communication included reusable patient information cards. These cards often became unreadable after 2-3 days due to pencil erasing of outdated information. Methods: The group setout to create a computerized version of these report cards that would be printable with each shift. The system was developed and implemented using Microsoft Access as the run program. Over the next 6 months input was taken from therapists for what items should be included, examples include ventilator settings, test results, history, and care plan information. The cards are printed each shift. Results were determined by direct observation. Results: Previously, history was often limited to primary diagnosis and the previous days events. After use of the computerized report system it was noted that 2 weeks of information was available in the Events and Changes area and a complete history of the stay including surgeries, important tests, and other new findings are placed in the History area. Current ventilator settings, Ett tube information, and blood gases were also much easier to record and read. Archival ability allows for continuum of care on readmission. Conclusion: The change to the computerized system has resulted in an improvement in the quality of data and knowledge for Respiratory Care Services. For Handoff communication between shifts card portability allows for better patient daily rounds, up to date information, and ability to suggest changes to the patient care plan. Card Example Sponsored Research - None

Example of Card

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