Teaching a 'good' ward round

Natalie Powell, Christopher G Bruce, Oliver Redfern
Clinical Medicine: Journal of the Royal College of Physicians of London 2015, 15 (2): 135-8
Ward rounds are a vital part of hospital medicine and junior doctors play a key role in their delivery. Despite the importance of ward rounds to patient care and experience, we believe that junior doctors may lack the training and skills to carry them out most effectively. We designed a simulation-based training session focusing on ward round skills themed to key patient safety issues and have delivered the training to over 100 learners (medical students and foundation year one doctors). Few learners had any prior training in ward rounds. The session was highly valued by all participants and surveys completed both before and after the session showed statistically significant improvements in confidence in leading and documenting ward rounds. In addition, 94% of final year medical students and 93% of doctors felt such training should be included in the undergraduate curriculum. We believe there is a current gap in training around ward round skills and would strongly encourage simulation-based ward round training to be developed for undergraduates. Further sessions following qualification may then consolidate and develop ward round skills adapted to the level of the doctor.

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