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Research Letter
September 2016

Association of a Web-Based Handoff Tool With Rates of Medical Errors

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of General Internal Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts

Copyright 2016 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.

JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176(9):1400-1402. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.4258

Communication among health care personnel is vulnerable to error during patient handoffs (ie, the transfer of responsibility for patient care between health care professionals). Handoffs occur with high frequency in the hospital and have been increasing following restrictions of resident work hours.1 However, to our knowledge, there remains a lack of rigorously performed studies that help guide best practices in handoffs of hospitalized adult patients. In this study, we implemented a web-based handoff tool and training for health care professionals, and evaluated the association of the tool with rates of medical errors in adult medical and surgical patients.

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