The effect of an educational programme on attitudes of nurses and medical residents towards the benefits of positive communication and collaboration

Authors


R. McCaffrey: e-mail: rmccaffr@fau.edu

Abstract

mccaffrey r., hayes r.m., cassell a., miller-reyes s., donaldson a. & ferrell c. (2012) The effect of an educational programme on attitudes of nurses and medical residents towards the benefits of positive communication and collaboration. Journal of Advanced Nursing 68(2), 293–301.

Abstract

Aims.  This article is a report of a study to determine the effect of an educational programme and to follow up weekly meetings on nurses and medical resident’s attitudes towards positive communication and collaboration.

Background.  Clear and appropriate communication and interdisciplinary collaboration is critical to the delivery of quality care. Collaborative practice among all healthcare professionals creates a positive work environment, decreases costs, improves job satisfaction among nurses and improves patient care, as well as decreasing patient morbidity and mortality. Poor communication and lack of teamwork or collaboration have been cited as persistent problems in healthcare.

Method.  The study was conducted in 2008 - 2009 at a hospital where a new medical residency programme was beginning and nurses had no prior experience working with medical residents. A quasi-experimental pre test, post-test design was used. The Jefferson Scale of Attitudes towards Physician-Nurse Collaboration and the Communication, Collaboration and Critical Thinking for Quality Patient Outcomes Survey tool measured the attitudes of 68 nurses and 47 medical residents in the areas of positive communication and collaboration.

Results/Findings.  The study demonstrates that a formal educational programme and follow-up discussions improved the attitudes of both nurses and medical residents on the Jefferson scale (medical residents t = 4·68, P = 0·001, nurses t = 4·37, P = 0·001) and on the communication scale (medical residents t = 4·23, P = 0·001, nurses t = 4·13, P = 0·001).

Conclusion.  Continuing education for nurses, medical residents and other healthcare providers may assist in developing positive communication styles and promote collegiality and team work.

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