I agree with the editorial1 by Drs Dracup and Morris: shift change (or “handoff”) is a big deal. It’s that crucial time when I am passing on someone’s livelihood. To me, it is essential to give a thorough report during shift changes.

I have worked in 3 different critical care settings in 3 very different institutions. The key to a good and organized report is going through the systems head to toe, but the one aspect of report that I feel always allowed the best continuity of care was the “chart check.” Those nurses leaving and those coming on would review the orders for the ending shift together, passing along what had or hadn’t been done at that point. Reinforcement of the current plan of care was an aspect of report that was enhanced by using the chart...

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