Improving communication and reliability of patient handovers in pediatric cardiac care

Julie K. Johnson*, Vineet M. Arora, Emile A. Bacha, Paul R. Barach

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Clinical handover serves as the basis for transitioning patient care between incoming and outgoing medical providers across shifts and across care settings. Improving handovers of patient care has become an international priority. The handover process offers many opportunities for incidents and adverse patient outcomes. There are several recommendations that guide the work to improve handovers in pediatric cardiac care - approach handover as a complex adaptive process, recognize the effect of culture on creating change and sustaining improvement, develop tools to make information more accessible for clinicians during the handover process, apply human factors principles to the design of handover, focus on training those who are responsible for handovers to effectively handover care, learn from errors and near misses to better understand where failures may occur, actively engage patient families processes of care, and, identify the necessary leadership for creating a learning organization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-139
Number of pages5
JournalProgress in Pediatric cardiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011


  • Communication
  • Handoffs
  • Handovers
  • Patient safety
  • Pediatric cardiac surgery
  • Teams

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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