Effective communication in clinical handover

Effective communication in clinical handover

This project focussed on clinician to clinician communication in clinical handover in five hospitals across Australia. In collaboration with partner organisations and clinicians, the team translated the comprehensive, descriptive frameworks into innovative evidence-based interventions and policy recommendations. Our policy recommendations and the handover model we developed for effective clinical handover communication have informed the new standard on Communicating for Patient Safety, developed by the Australian Commission for the Safety and Quality in Healthcare. We developed and delivered training to 340 nurses across the Canberra Hospital. The post-training evaluations demonstrated significant changes in practice. The success of this intervention resulted in further funding for other projects in Australia and Hong Kong.

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)
  • Lesley Farrell
  • Elizabeth Trickett
  • John Walsh
  • Jon Juriedini
  • Malccolm Battersby
  • Christy Pirone
  • Dorothy Jones
  • Phillip Della
  • Ted Stewart-Wynne
  • James Dunne
  • Elizabeth Manias
  • Bernadette Watson
  • Jacqui Bear


Publications include:

Eggins, Suzanne, Slade, Diana and Geddes, Fiona (eds) 2016 Effective Communication in Clinical Handover – from Research to Practice De Gruyter Mouton, Berlin; (PASA, Patient Safety 16).

Pun, J., Chan, E.A., Man, M., Eggins, S., Slade, D. (2019 accepted for publication). Pre- and post-evaluations of the effects of the Connect, Ask, Respond and Empathise (CARE) protocol on nursing handover: A case study of a bilingual hospital in Hong Kong. Journal of clinical nursing. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.1487

Slade D, Murray KA, Pun JKH, Eggins S. (2018). Nurses’ perceptions of mandatory bedside clinical handovers: An Australian hospital study. Journal of Nursing Managment. 2018;00:1–11. https://doi.org/10.1111/jonm.12661

Slade, D., Pun, J., Murray, K. A., & Eggins, S. (2018). Benefits of health care communication training for nurses conducting bedside handovers: An Australian hospital case study. The Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 49(7), 329-336. https://doi.org/10.3928/00220124-20180613-09

Eggins, Suzanne and Slade, Diana. 2016 “Contrasting Verbal Styles and Barriers to Patient Participation in Bedside Nursing Handovers.” Communication and Medicine, 13.1, 2016 (special volume on Team Talk)

Pun, Jack K.H., Matthiessen Christian, Murray Kristen, Slade Diana, (2015) ‘Factors affecting communication in emergency departments: doctors and nurses perceptions of communication in a trilingual ED in Hong Kong.’  International Journal of Emergency Medicine. (2015) 8:48 DOI 10.1186/s12245-015-0095-y http://www.intjem.com/content/8/1/48

Eggins, Suzanne and Diana Slade (2015) ‘Communication in clinical handover: improving the safety and quality of the patient experience’ in Journal of Public Health Research, 2015, Vol 4.666

Rider EA, Kurtz S, Slade D, Esterbrook Longmaid III HE, Ming-Jung Ho, Pun Kwok Hung J, Eggins S, Branch WT. 2014. “The International Charter for Human Values in Healthcare: An interprofessional global collaboration to enhance values and communication in healthcare.” Patient Education and Counselling (2014), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/ j.pec.2014.06.017

Eggins, Suzanne & Slade, Diana (2012) “Clinical handover as an interactive event: informational and interactional communication strategies in effective shift-change handovers.” Communication and Medicine Volume 9(3), pp. 215–227

Updated:  23 July 2020/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications