Rounding, the process of visiting patients and families at the bedside, serves many functions within a healthcare organization. It can be performed by executive leaders, nurse leaders, multi-disciplinary teams, nurses, environmental services and other clinical and support groups. Objectives for rounding range from improving patient safety, creating more efficient care workflow, enhancing communication and experience, and/or identifying improvement opportunities.
Regardless of the specific approach, for rounding to help drive experience and outcome improvements that lead to lasting growth and loyalty, it must be approached with authenticity and with an eye towards addressing patient needs and goals, not simply following a checklist.
In our recent webinar with members of the National Patient Experience Collaborative, we learned about how nurses at a ministry at Ascension Health added an honorary 5th P, presence, to 4 P’s rounding. This 5th P was added to remind themselves that how they round is as important as what they do during rounds. Through their mindful approach to rounding, Ascension has achieved decreased pressure ulcer prevalence, decreased call light volume, noted fewer falls, and experienced higher overall satisfaction.
Having examined several rounding programs, ExperiaHealth has distilled seven principles of rounding for human caring and connection:
Ask Open Ended Questions
“What is your personal goal for today?”
“What are your greatest fears or concerns about your hospitalization or visit?”
This must be difficult for you.”
Confirm Understanding (e.g., Teach back)
Repeat what you heard. Verify Understanding.
Explain actions to be taken and next steps; including when you hope to have resolution.
Remain Authentic and Present
When engaging stakeholders in dialogue, it’s critical to provide your undivided attention. In the moment, you must remain engaged and refrain from passing judgment.
Act on the information you gained from visiting with the patient and set expectations for what will happen next.
When done effectively, the rounding process improves experience for not only patients and families, but for staff as well by reducing interruptions in care delivery and, more importantly, restoring relationships between patients and their care team.
*Members of the National Patient Experience Collaborative may contact us for the full Solution Brief and access to the recorded webinar.