Enferm Intensiva (Engl Ed). 2023 Mar 16:S2529-9840(23)00012-5. doi: 10.1016/j.enfie.2022.02.002. Online ahead of print.
AIM: To know the characteristics of the handover performed by nurses working in Critical Care Units in Spain.
METHODS: Descriptive and cross-sectional study, whose population was nurses working in Critical Care Units in Spain. An ad hoc questionnaire was used to explore the characteristics of the process, the training received, the information forgotten and the influence of this activity on patient care. The questionnaire was online and dissemination was done through social networks. The sample was selected by convenience. A descriptive analysis was performed according to the nature of the variables and comparison of groups through ANOVA with R software version 4.0.3 (R Project for Statistical Computing).
RESULTS: The sample was 420 nurses. Most of them answered that (79,5%) perform this activity in an individual way, from outgoing nurse to incoming nurse. Location varied according to the size of the unit (p<0,05). Interdisciplinary handover was rare (p<0.05). In the last month, with regard to the time of data collection, 29,5% had to contact the unit due to forgetting relevant information, using WhatsApp as the first channel to transmit this information.
CONCLUSIONS: There is a lack of standardization in the handoff between shifts, in terms of the physical space where it is done, tools to structure the information, participation of other professionals and the use of unofficial communication channels to contact for omitted information during the handover. Shift change was identified as a vital process to ensure continuity of care and patient safety, so further researchs are important for patients handoffs.