Reduced emergency calls and improved weekend discharge after introduction of a new electronic handover system.
Med J Aust. 2012 Nov 19;197(10):569-73
Authors: Rao BS, Lowe GO, Hughes AJ
OBJECTIVES: To measure the frequency and content of electronic handover before and after implementation of the Blue BARRWUE handover system, and to measure its effect on patient safety and hospital efficiency over weekends.
DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Point-prevalence study comparing outcomes for general medical inpatients present over weekends before implementation (1 May 2008 to 30 April 2009) and after implementation (1 May 2009 to 30 April 2010) of the Blue BARRWUE handover system at Geelong Hospital.
INTERVENTION: Implementation of the Blue BARRWUE handover system and its components (updated working diagnosis, background, alerts, resuscitation status, requests, who to do what and when, updates and executable discharge plan).
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Presence of any written handover notes or updated working diagnoses in the BOSSnet clinical information system, content of handover notes, frequency of weekend discharges and medical emergency team (MET) calls before and after implementation.
RESULTS: In the 12 months before implementation of the Blue BARRWUE handover system, 976 patients (47.98%) had a handover note in BOSSnet, versus 1646 patients (95.09%) in the 12 months after implementation (P< 0.001; rate ratio [RR], 20.75; 95% CI, 16.33-26.44). Before implementation, 289 patients (14.21%) were discharged over weekends, versus 353 patients (20.39%) after implementation, (P < 0.001; RR, 1.44; 95% CI, 1.25-1.65). MET calls were made for 152 general medical patients before implementation (7.47%), versus 95 general medical patients (5.49%) after implementation (P = 0.01; RR, 0.73; 95% CI, 0.57-0.94).
CONCLUSIONS: The Blue BARRWUE system has sustainably improved written handover in our organisation and was associated with improvement in both patient safety and hospital efficiency.
PMID: 23163688 [PubMed - in process]