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John Wiley & Sons

Source Publication

Worldviews on Evidence-Based Nursing

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Background and Rationale

Poor communication between health team members can interfere with timely, coordinated preparation for hospital discharge. Research on daily bedside interprofessional health team rounds and nursing bedside shift handoff reports provides evidence that these strategies can improve communication.


To improve health team communication and collaboration about hospital discharge; improve patient experience of discharge measured by patient‐reported quality of discharge teaching, readiness for discharge, and postdischarge coping difficulty; and reduce readmissions and emergency department (ED) visits postdischarge.


A two‐sample pre‐ and postintervention design provided baseline data for redesign of health team communication processes and comparison data for evaluation of the new process’ impact. Health team members (n = 105 [pre], n = 95 [post]) from two surgical units of an academic medical center in the midwestern United States provided data on discharge‐related communication and collaboration. Patients (n = 413 [pre], n = 191 [post]) provided data on their discharge experience (quality of discharge teaching, readiness for discharge, postdischarge coping difficulty) and outcomes (readmissions, ED visits). Chi‐square and t tests were used for unadjusted pre‐ and postintervention comparisons. Logistic regression of readmissions with a matched pre‐ and postintervention sample included adjustments for patient characteristics and hospitalization factors.


Readmissions decreased from 18% to 12% (p < .001); ED visits decreased from 4.4% to 1.5% (p < .001). Changes in health team communication and collaboration and patients’ experience of discharge were minimal.


The targeted outcomes of readmission and ED visits improved after the health team communication process redesign. The process indicators did not improve; potential explanations include unmeasured hospital and unit discharge, and other care process changes during the study timeframe.

Linking Evidence to Practice

Evidence from daily interprofessional team bedside rounding and bedside shift report studies was translated into a redesign of health team communication for discharge. These strategies support readmission reduction efforts.


Accepted version. Worldviews on Evidence-Based Nursing, Vol. 16, No. 2 (March 27, 2019): 131-130. DOI. © 2019 John Wiley & Sons. Used with permission.

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