Infection Control Today

SEP 2018

ICT delivers to infection preventionists & their colleagues in the operating room, sterile processing/central sterile, environmental services & materials management, timely & relevant news, trends & information impacting the profession & the industry

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editor's letter Sy s tem. T hen, nur ses and phy sicians watched and commented on the clips separately, and those comments were incorporated into the video. Finally, both parties watched the clip together. "The only way you can become aware of your habits is by watching yourself," Manojlovich says. Overall, the interactions were positive in the sense that there wasn't any contention, but there was room for improvement. "One physician said, 'I didn't give the nurse a chance to answer,' and this physician had a habit of doing that and recognized it," Manojlovich says. "She was one of the champions of the study." Imagine how a key infection prevention issue such as hand hygiene is not being received if communication lines are not open among all healthcare professionals. It may serve infection preventionists well if they observe healthcare personnel interactions to identify ways that dialogue can be improved and perspectives can be heard. Until next month, bust those bugs! A communication breakdown among nurses and doctors is one of the primary reasons for patient care-related errors in the hospital. In a small pilot study funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, University of Michigan researchers learned about potential causes of these communication failures by recording interactions among nurses and doctors, and then having them watch and critique the footage together. Several themes emerged to help explain the poor communication, and both nurses and physicians improved their communication styles, reports Milisa Manojlovich, a U-M professor of nursing, who defi nes communi- cation as reaching a shared understanding. One barrier to good communication is that the hospital hierarchy puts nurses at a power disadvantage, and many are afraid to speak the truth to doctors, Manojlovich says. The recordings showed that nurses didn't directly request what they wanted or express their needs. They communicated indirectly, which confused physicians, who often ignored the nurses' requests and moved on to the next agenda item rather than ask for clarifi cation. The study also found that because doctors and nurses approach patient care from vastly different angles, achieving understanding isn't easy. Manojlovich said one interaction showcased the different approaches to patient care. A patient with mouth pain caused by a fungal infection, couldn't swallow the pills she needed to get better. The physician wanted to prescribe more medication to treat the thrush, but the nurse—who knew the patient well—wanted to treat the patient with strong painkillers, as well. "The physician realized that the pain was inhibiting the treatment, and treating the pain, as well as the condition, would solve the problem," Manojlovich says. Manojlovich and her team followed physicians and nurses at the U-M Health Kelly M. Pyrek Editor in Chief Video Recordings Reveal Poor Communication Between Nurses and Physicians Ò One barrier to good communication is that the hospital hierarchy puts nurses at a power disadvantage, and many are afraid to speak the truth to doctors. EDITORIAL EDITOR IN CHIEF Kelly M. Pyrek S ALE S/MARK E TING ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Jay Franco SUBSCRIPTION CUSTOMER SERVICE 800-581-1811 PRODUC TION ART DIRECTOR Robert Rys AD PRODUCTION MANAGER Bonnie Streit DIRECTOR PUBLICATIONS Joseph Chackola HUMAN RESOURCES DIRECTOR Donna Layton INFORMA E XHIBITIONS LLC 2020 N. Central Ave., Ste. 400 Phoenix, AZ 85004 Phone: 480-867-7943 Web: 6 ICT September 2018

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