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Discourse processes in shift handover sessions of medical care units

English title Discourse processes in shift handover sessions of medical care units
Applicant Bangerter Adrian
Number 118630
Funding scheme ProDoc
Research institution IPTO - Institut de Psychologie du Travail et des Organisations Université de Neuchâtel
Institution of higher education University of Neuchatel - NE
Main discipline Psychology
Start/End 01.12.2007 - 30.11.2010
Approved amount 141'634.00
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Keywords (8)

organizational communication; shift handover; organizational routines; collaborative task; discourse processes; nursing; team; dialogue

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary
The planned research will investigate discourse processes in shift handover sessions in medical organizations. Shift handover sessions are routine events that punctuate transitions between shifts in care units. They are often organized as meetings where members of the outgoing shift brief members of the incoming shift on new developments that have emerged in the care unit, typically the details of patients' health status. The planned research focuses on handover in nursing teams. The goal is to understand relations between discursive features of handover organization and the task and organizational environment of the care unit. There are two main research questions. First, how are shift handover sessions organized in Swiss hospitals? Second, how is the organization of handover related to the organizational and task environment of the care unit? Two studies are planned for a total funding period of 36 months. The goal of Study 1 is to obtain a representative overview of shift handover procedures in care units of Swiss hospitals. Sixty care units will be sampled. Head nurses responsible for shift handovers in each unit will be interviewed about various aspects of handover in their units (e.g., number and duration of handover sessions per day, preparation, who is present, who participates, communication type, functions, problems and critical incidents, satisfaction and change). Beyond a description of handover practices, Study 1 will identify relevant dimensions of task environments that differentiate care units according to their handover procedures. Building on these results, Study 2 consists of in-depth observation of communication processes in handover sessions over a consecutive five-day period in four care units. Care units will be selected from participating organizations in Study 1 to vary according to the relevant environmental dimensions identified. Analysis will first consist of detailed within-case analyses of the discourse processes in the handover sessions (e.g., who contributes information, content of information, phases in handover). Then, cross-case analyses will be performed to compare discourse features as a function of the organizational and task environment.The planned research contributes to a better understanding of the interplay of formal and informal processes in organizational communication routines. Second, it can link studies in neighboring fields such as collaborative work and organizational theory. The applicant and the doctoral student will seek publication of the results in international peer-reviewed journals in these fields. Practical implications for the design or reengineering of shift handover sessions may also result from the study, especially better insights about the potential implications of streamlining particular aspects of the handover routine. A special effort will be made to communicate the study results to participating organizations. A report will also be made available to other interested organizations (e.g., professional associations).
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Task uncertainty and communication during nursing shift handovers
Mayor Eric, Bangerter Adrian, Aribot Myriam (2012), Task uncertainty and communication during nursing shift handovers, in Journal of Advanced Nursing, 68, 1956.
Reported speech in conversational narratives during nursing shift handover meetings
Bangerter Adrian, Mayor Eric, Pekarek Doehler Simona (2011), Reported speech in conversational narratives during nursing shift handover meetings, in Discourse Processes, 48, 183.
Adaptability of nursing handovers: contingency theory shows the limits of standardization
Mayor Eric (2011), Adaptability of nursing handovers: contingency theory shows the limits of standardization, in Studies in Communication Sciences, 11, 173.

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
18th annual conference of the Society for Text and Discourse 12.07.2013 Memphis
21st annual meeting of the Society for Text and Discourse 11.07.2013 Poitiers
15th annual conference of the European Association of Work and Organizational psychology 25.05.2011 Maastricht
20th Anniversary meeting of the Society for Text and Discourse 16.08.2010 Chicago
67th annual ICP Conference 04.07.2009 Mexico City


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
134875 Mobile and Contingent Work Interactions in the Hospital Care Unit 01.09.2011 ProDoc

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