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Janet Davies, Director of Nursing at the Royal College of Nursing, has told Daybreak that ward rounds have been forgotten in the busyness and chaos of hospitals.
The Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Nursing are united in calling for ward rounds to be made the cornerstone of patient care. Daybreak's Sally Lockwood reports.
- Preparation for the ward round should include a pre-round briefing.
- Consultant-led ward rounds should be conducted in the morning to facilitate timely completion of tasks during the working day.
- A nurse should be present at every bedside as part of the ward round.
- Patient, carers and relatives should be provided with a summary sheet clearly presenting information discussed in the ward round.
- Patients with dementia and learning disabilities should be supported as far as possible to make decisions about their care.
- Patients records should be kept centrally to promote effective communication and team working.
- Ward-round teams should utilise locally adapted checklists to reduce omissions, improve patient safety and strengthen multidisciplinary communication.
The Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Nursing are united in calling for ward rounds to be made the cornerstone of patient care.
The Colleges are also calling for a concerted culture change with clinical staff, managers and hospital executives engaging with, and focusing on, improving the quality of ward rounds.
Hospital staff are being stretched so thin that critical ward rounds are being neglected, leading clinicians have said.
Fewer members of staff, tighter budgets and a rising tide of admissions have led to a deterioration of ward rounds in hospitals, the Colleges have said.
The quality of rounds must improve to ensure that patients are seen as people and not conditions, they said.
Ward rounds are "critical" to patient care and should not be curtailed by hospital managers, they added.