Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments

Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments


Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments

The Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments project investigated communication between patients and clinicians in five representative emergency departments (EDs) It recorded, analysed and described spoken interactions between health-care practitioners and patients, focusing on the causes of misunderstandings and breakdowns in hospital emergency departments. It involved 1093 hours of observations, 150 interviews with key staff and patients and 82 patients recorded from triage to disposition. The project therefore represents one of the most comprehensive studies internationally on clinician–patient communication in hospitals (see Slade et al, 2015).

This was a three year Australian Research Council Linkage grant with funding from the ARC and the Linkage partners. 

Project team:

  • Diana Slade (lead CI)
  • Marie Manidis
  • Jeannette McGregor
  • Hermine Scheeres
  • Eloise Chandler
  • Jane Stein-Parbury
  • Roger Dunston
  • Christian Matthiessen


Communication in Australian Health Care: A Framework for Higher Education Institutions to Develop Communication Capabilities of Future Health Graduates

After the completion of the ARC project on Communication in Emergency Departments Diana Slade led a cross University grant (Australian Learning and Teaching Council) that produced a suite of multimedia, online pre-service medical education modules on Communication in Emergency Departments which has been implemented at Melbourne University and other university medical programs for training future doctors. This is the only evidenced-based communication module that builds on an analysis of what actually occurs in hospital emergency contexts.

Project Team:

  • Diana Slade (lead CI)
  • Robyn Woodward-Kron
  • Susy Macqueen
  • Eleanor Flynn
  • Hermine Scheeres
  • Jane Stein-Parbury


Publications include:

Slade, Diana, Manidis, Marie, McGregor, Jeannette, Scheeres, Hermine, Chandler, Eloise, Stein-Parbury, Jane, Dunston, Roger and Matthiessen, C. M.I.M. 2015 Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments, Springer, Germany, USA, China.

Pun, J. Chan, E.A., Wang, S. & Slade, D. (2018). Health professional-patient communication practices in East Asia: An integrative review of an emerging field of research and practice in Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Mainland China. Patient Education and Counseling. 101(7), 1193-1206.

Macqueen, Susy, Woodward-Kron, Robyn, Flynn, Eleanor, Reid, Katharine, Elliott, Kristine and Slade, Diana (2016) “A resource for teaching emergency care communication”, The Clinical Teacher, Volume 13, Issue 3, June 2016, Pages: 192–196, Version of Record online : 16 JUL 2015, DOI: 10.1111/tct.12423

Joyce, H, Slade, D, Bateson, D, Scheeres, H, McGregor, J and Weisberg, E (2015). “Patient-centred discourse in sexual and reproductive health consultations.” Discourse and Communication 9(3) June 2015

Slade, D, Scheeres, H, Manidis, M, Matthiessen, C.M.I.M., Iedema, R, Dunstan, R, Stein-Parbury, J, Herke, M, McGregor, J: (2008) ”Emergency Communication: the discursive challenges facing emergency clinicians and patients in hospital Emergency Departments” in Discourse and Communication, Vol 2/3, pp. 289-316

Scheeres, H; Slade, D, Manidis, M; McGregor, J, Matthiessen, C.M.I.M. (2008) ‘Communicating in Hospital Emergency Departments’ in Prospect, Vol 23.2

Ho Ting WONG, Qian YIN, Ying Qi GUO, Kristen MURRAY, Dong Hau ZHOU, Diana SLADE. (2015) Big data as a new approach in emergency medicine research. Journal of Acute Disease. 3:169-17


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