Q1. Based on the presentation of data, it can be concluded that the standardized handover tool has been successful in improving the quality of handover in the ward. Prior to the use of standardized handover procedure, the mean rate of satisfaction in the individuals was around 7.2 that advanced to 7.9 after the standardization procedure. The quality of the report has also seen an improvement after standardization in the procedure. The mean value of satisfaction and availability of the detailed information has also increased with the new handover procedure. The professionals have asserted that with the new handover standards, the availability of information that is received from the shift nurses is more advanced and of a better quality. Availability of detailed handovers is essential for effective communication in nursing practice (Riley 2015). Communication is critical in nursing as it helps in the identification of cues and provides a detailed analysis of the patient information during shift hours. It also briefs the professionals about the health condition of the patients and helps in the designing of the interventions as well as ensures effective management of the health of the patient (Abdrbo 2017). The nurses in the ward also indicated that with standardization of the procedure, untimely interruptions have also reduced significantly. Reduction in the interruptions from the nurses in the ward has been made possible due to improved communication channelling and working in a clinical setting. Due to presence of a standardized protocol for information sharing, it has been possible for the care professionals to focus on the key details that are present for the standardized communication that must be incorporated by the shift nurses in the handover. This makes the availability of the required information more enhanced and prevents unnecessary interruptions. A mild increase has also been observed in terms of availability of unnecessary information about the patients in the handover charts. However, this can be enhanced by further training of the ward nurses where the importance and significance of relevant information in communication and handovers can be directed (Simamora and Fathi 2019). Nursing handovers serve the prime function of improvement of care quality and patient satisfaction as well (Silva et al. 2016). Availability of suitable information like medical history of the patient, current health status, applied interventions, and patient vitals are noted in the shift handovers (Fateel and O’Neill 2016). Availability of this information can help the coming nurse provide the care to the patient in accordance with the ongoing health program, identify health cues and other significant signals that may help in better planning, application of interventions, and assist in the provision of suitable care for the patient (Tija et al. 2017). Hence, based on the data presented, it can be concluded that the standardized handover tool has been effective in the quality of handover in the ward.
Q2. The National Safety and Quality Health Service standards have been developed by the Government of Australia to focus on ensuring quality care and safe healthcare services in the clinical settings (Hamilton 2019). The standard six of the National Safety and Quality Health Service standards is based on communicating for safety in healthcare (Hamilton 2019). Effective communication is a primary competence that is required for nursing and high quality care of the patient. The process of communication is done through verbal and non-verbal means. In healthcare practice, written communication is of prime importance as it helps in keeping records that are crucial for the development of interventions and care procedures (Cashin et al. 2017). It is important that the information that is communicated in regard with the patient is clear and free from ambiguities by the shift nurses as it can affect the process of care and impact the overall beneficence of the patient. The data obtained showcases the need for standardization in the communication process in the hospital setting. The data obtained in the study reveals that effective communication is important in the improving the satisfaction of the nursing professionals as well as in the improvement of the care provided to the professionals (Tehranineshat et al. 2019). Prior to the availability of standardized protocol for communication, the nurses in the ward had raised concerned over incompetent handover process and time consumption in the process of articulation of the required information. However, with the presence of standardized procedure, it has been noticed that there has been an improvement in the nurse satisfaction in the ward and the quality of the standards is also affected. The interruption rates in the ward setting have also declines. This implies, that the nurses have been able to communicate in handovers and the interruptions are low. With limited interruptions and detailed handouts, the quality of care for the patients is also enhanced as the nurses will now be able to focus on the current patients, have detailed assessment and medical knowledge of the patient, and will be prepared for care after receiving the handover. As per the National Safety and Quality Health Service standards, effective communication is thus applied through standardization of handover protocol (Hamilton 2019). This study is beneficial and can be applied for the improvement as well as analysis of the clinical care setting functions as they focus on the improvement of communication and assert on its importance. Handovers are a form of written communication and crucial for care settings. Through this study. It can be identified and further analyzed how communication as per the National Safety and Quality Health Service standards can improve the overall nursing practice, professional satisfaction, and quality of care in the professionals (Tehranineshat et al. 2019).
Inclusion of beside handover in the clinical setting will be a practice that will enhance the quality of care. The bedside handover will ensure that the nurse on duty has readily access to the documents and the details of the patient (Simamora and Fathi 2019). This would result in the development of care interventions that are based on clinical evidence and health progression of the patient (Jung and Bae 2019). Therefore, bedside handover will enhance the quality of care and service in the ward setting. Availability of the bedside records will also ensure that the healthcare professionals have access to the patient information even in times of an emergency or absence of primary carer (Riley 2015). The availability of the records in proximity with the patient will also enhance the ease of reporting in the healthcare professionals. Therefore, the inclusion of a bedside handover is a practice that will enhance the quality and service of care for the patients and also enhance the professional working of the nurses in the facility (Abdrbo 2017).
Inclusion of family in care will also enhance the quality of care and the patient experience in the care facility. The nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia asserts the importance of person-centred care for improved quality of service and patient experience in the clinical facility (Cashin 2017). Inclusion of the family of the patients will help in the development of holistic care plans with the patient need and concerns that will promote the beneficence of the patient and promote a holistic care (Jung and Bae 2019). Inclusion of family and carers in the care plan has been regarded as prime significance as they can provide moral support and strength in the process of recovery (Simamora and Fathi 2019). This is also an integral component of strength based nursing and is regarded as primary for effective care. The purpose of this nursing practice is to ensure that the patient is able to achieve highest quality care that can facilitate his or her well being in the terms of physical well being, mental healthcare, and the social well being of the patient (Hamilton 2019). Involvement of the family in the provision will also ensure that the personal care needs of the patient are addressed and met (Jung and Bae 2019). Family involvement also accelerates the process of recovery as the patient gains the care and support required for holistic care. Person-centred care is possible only with the availability of crucial insights that are associated with the individual in particular (Riley 2015). Through the involvement of the family and allies, effective person-centred care can be ensured for the patients with consideration of their physical, spiritual, social, as well as cultural needs. Therefore, the inclusion of family in the process of decision making, understanding the care needs of the patient, and in the delivery of person-centred care can be of prime importance in ensuring highest quality care and patient experience in the care facilities (Abdrbo 2017).
Abdrbo, A. 2017. Assessment of nursing students’ communication skills. Nursing Education Perspectives, 38(3), pp.149-151.
Cashin, A., Heartfield, M., Bryce, J., Devey, L., Buckley, T., Cox, D., Kerdo, E., Kelly, J., Thoms, D. and Fisher, M. 2017. Standards for practice for registered nurses in Australia. Collegian, 24(3), pp.255-266.
Fateel, E.E. and O’Neill, C.S., 2016. Family members’ involvement in the care of critically ill patients in two intensive care units in an acute hospital in Bahrain: The experiences and perspectives of family members’ and nurses’-A qualitative study. Clincal Nursing Studies, 4(1), pp.57-69.
Hamilton, S. 2019. The new NSQHS standards: One day surgery unit's accreditation experience. Day Surgery Australia, 18(2), p.16.
Jung, M.Y. and Bae, J. 2019. Educational needs of communication among nursing students. Journal of Korean Academy of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 28(1), pp.91-101.
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Silva, M.F.D., Anders, J.C., Rocha, P.K., Souza, A.I.J.D. and Burciaga, V.B. 2016. Communication in nursing shift handover: pediatric patient safety. Texto & Contexto-Enfermagem, 25(3).
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Tehranineshat, B., Rakhshan, M., Torabizadeh, C. and Fararouei, M. 2019. Nurses’, patients’, and family caregivers’ perceptions of compassionate nursing care. Nursing Ethics, 26(6), pp.1707-1720.
Tjia, J., Lemay, C.A., Bonner, A., Compher, C., Paice, K., Field, T., Mazor, K., Hunnicutt, J.N., Lapane, K.L. and Gurwitz, J. 2017. Informed family member involvement to improve the quality of dementia care in nursing homes. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 65(1), pp.59-65.
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