Journal of Undergraduate Research


standardized hand-off tool, undergraduate nursing students, patient safety




In establishing patient safety, communication is one of the most important components to consider. In order to coordinate a patient’s care properly, the multiple and diverse healthcare providers must operate smoothly as a team through well-constructed communication techniques. TeamSTEPPS is a government designed program to educated healthcare professionals on how to work and communicate effectively as a team. The program initiators included specific tools to be used to perform hand-offs. Hand-offs is when a healthcare professional transfers crucial information requiring a patient’s care with another healthcare professional. This is an extremely important process because it can cause devastating results if the information is not completely and concisely given. An estimated 80% of all sentinel events have been connected to ineffective hand-off communication between medical staff (The Joint Commission, 2010). In 2006, the Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goals altered their requirement to have hospital implement a standardized hand-off communication approach that allowed medial staff to answer and ask questions regarding the patient’s care during the hand-off (Advance Healthcare Network for Nurses, 2005). Since this is a requirement for hospitals, it is natural that nursing schools should also instruct their students to use a standardized hand-off tool to practice effective team communication. Currently, Brigham Young University’s (BYU) College of Nursing is not using a standardized hand-off mnemonic to train novice nursing students to convey serious information about a patient’s care. This jeopardizes the practice of giving complete, concise, and consistent hand-off reports and further endangers patient safety. Therefore, the purpose of this project is to introduce a standardized hand-off mnemonic tool for nursing students to utilize and determine its effectiveness in assisting nursing students to convey information efficiently and establish confidence.

Included in

Nursing Commons