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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

WashU, Loyola: Communication across Professional Lines Could Improve Care

Physicians are more likely than nurses to form inter-professional ties in a health-care setting, according to new research from the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis and Loyola University in Chicago.

Jenine Harris
[Photo:  Dr. Jenine K. Harris]

Researchers surveyed 71 health professionals working in a hospital burn unit, asking them how often and with whom they discussed patient care while on their shifts. They found that nurses were more likely to communicate with other nurses, while physicians were more likely to communicate with those in different professional roles.

“The type and quality of the ties formed by nurses in this team are likely to be crucial to patient care,” wrote co-author Dr. Jenine K. Harris, associate professor at the Brown School who was the study’s methodologist. “Patients may also benefit from nurses who develop more inter-professional ties.”

The study was published July 19 in the Journal of Interprofessional Care.

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