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Effective clinical handover communication: improving patient safety, experience and outcomes

Funding: 2009: $55,000
2010: $80,000
2011: $70,000
2012: $45,000

Project Member(s): Slade, D., Scheeres, H.

Funding or Partner Organisation: Australian Research Council (ARC Linkage Projects)
South Australian Department of Health (SA Health (Public Health & Clinical Coordination))
Queensland Health
NSW Department of Health
Department of Health, Western Australia
ACT Health (ACT Health Partnership Fund)
Cisco Systems Australia Pty. Ltd. (Cisco Systems Australia Pty Ltd)

Start year: 2009

Summary: The handover of clinical information and responsibility of patient care in hospitals is critical to patient safety. Communication breakdowns at clinical handover are a major cause of critical incidents in hospitals, resulting in patient harm and death and triggering most patient complaints. This project aims to improve communication in clinical handovers, thereby reducing critical incidents. It will deploy an innovative cross-disciplinary approach, incorporating language analysis, reflexive design and ethnography, to identify the features of effective and ineffective handover communication. Knowledge will be shared across hospitals and five jurisdictions to develop national, sustainable, research-based resources, policies and frameworks.

Keywords: Health Communication, Quality patient care, Spoken and written language, Health Service Organisation, Patient safety, Discourse Analysis,

FOR Codes: Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified, Other Language, Literature and Culture, Public health not elsewhere classified, Health and support services not elsewhere classified, Allied Health Therapies (excl. Mental Health Services), Indigenous Health not elsewhere classified