Ward rounds are the focal point for a hospital’s multidisciplinary teams to undertake assessments and care planning with their patients. Coordination of assessments, plans and communication is essential for effective and efficient care.
However, the delivery of ward rounds is consistently constrained by the competing priorities of clinical staff. A number of factors contribute to this, including workforce gaps, inadequate planning, unwarranted variation in practice and an absence of training in the skills required to deliver complex multidisciplinary team care. This leads to frustration for staff and patients, and can lead to errors in care, longer stays in hospital and readmissions.
A new report from UK healthcare professional leaders including the RCP, and developed along with patients, sets out best practice for modern ward rounds.
Modern ward rounds: Good practice for multidisciplinary inpatient review brings together the good practice currently being delivered in the NHS and enables clinical teams to self-assess against this and identify priorities for improvement. It offers organisational leaders a template for a standardised approach to multidisciplinary team inpatient assessment, which can be delivered through hospital-wide improvement programmes.
The guidance describes how care can be delivered in hospital in partnership with patients, families and carers, and has the potential to revitalise care to improve outcomes. To support implementation, the report includes templates, checklists and advice.
The guidance was produced by the Royal College of Physicians, Royal College of Nursing, Royal Pharmaceutical Society, the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, NHS England and has the support of the GIRFT programme.
Modern Ward Rounds supersedes the 2012 report Ward rounds in medicine: principles for best practice. The original report is available to download here for research purposes only, please use Modern Ward Rounds for current practice.
Watch Dr John Dean present Modern Ward Rounds to colleagues from NHSE/I and ECIST here.