City Research Online

Interruptions During Senior Nurse Handover in the Intensive Care Unit: A Quality Improvement Study

Spooner, A. J., Chaboyer, W. & Aitken, L. M. ORCID: 0000-0001-5722-9090 (2019). Interruptions During Senior Nurse Handover in the Intensive Care Unit: A Quality Improvement Study. Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 34(1), E15-E21. doi: 10.1097/ncq.0000000000000345


BACKGROUND: Interruptions during handover may compromise continuity of care and patient safety.

LOCAL PROBLEM: Interruptions occur frequently during handovers in the intensive care unit.

METHODS: A quality improvement study was undertaken to improve nursing team leader handover processes. The frequency, source, and reason interruptions occurred were recorded before and after a handover intervention.

INTERVENTIONS: The intervention involved relocating handover from the desk to bedside and using a printed version of an evidence-based electronic minimum data set. These strategies were supported by education, champions, reminders, and audit and feedback.

RESULTS: Forty handovers were audiotaped before, and 49 were observed 3 months following the intervention. Sixty-four interruptions occurred before and 52 after the intervention, but this difference was not statistically significant. Team leaders were frequently interrupted by nurses discussing personal or work-specific matters before and after the intervention.

CONCLUSIONS: Further work is required to reduce interruptions that do not benefit patient care.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: Bedside Handoff, Handover, Intensive Care Unit, Interruptions, Quality Improvement
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences
SWORD Depositor:
[thumbnail of Interruptions during senior nurse handover in the intensive care unit.pdf]
Text - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (254kB) | Preview


Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login