Key recommendations for hospital wards

  • 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.

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NHS ward rounds 'neglected'

The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) and the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) are united in calling for ward rounds to be made the cornerstone of patient care after a fall in standards.