Communication about patients during ward rounds and verbal handovers: A gender perspective.
J Interprof Care. 2019 Mar 26;:1-9
Authors: Hedegaard J
This article investigates gender patterns on how two interprofessional teams communicate about patients in their absence. Thirteen ward rounds and 17 verbal handovers were audio-recorded and analyzed through a qualitative content analysis. The ward rounds consisted of 1 physician and 2-4 nurses. The verbal handovers consisted of 2-3 nurses and as many assistant nurses. The data were collected at a cardiac clinic at a hospital in southern Sweden. The results indicate that when patients acted according to socially-accepted gender norms, the communication among the interprofessional teams was characterized as 'professional', including communication primarily about the medical situation of the patient and statements of a non-judgmental nature. When patients did not act according to socially-accepted gender norms, the communication among the interprofessional teams switched to become more 'informal', including non-medical oriented statements of a negative nature. When the healthcare workers take the patient's psycho-social condition into account, as advocated by concepts like 'holistic care' and 'patient-centered care', the risk for speculation and arbitrariness may increase, especially within interprofessional teams who hold a nursing responsibility for patients. Establishing more defined guidelines of how non-medical aspects should be dealt with are thus of importance to the development of an equitable provision and delivery of healthcare.
PMID: 30912686 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]