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Evaluation of the TRANSITION tool to improve communication during older patients’ care transitions: healthcare practitioners’ perspectives

journal contribution
posted on 2020-07-01, 00:00 authored by Jacqueline Allen, Alison HutchinsonAlison Hutchinson, Rhonda BrownRhonda Brown, Trish LivingstonTrish Livingston
Aims: To evaluate healthcare practitioners’ perceptions of the feasibility and acceptability of a communication tool, entitled the TRANSITION tool, to communicate with older patients during transition from acute care to a community setting. Background: Transitional care for older patients is challenging due to their complex care needs and rapid care transitions. Research has identified effective models of transitional care. However, optimal communication between healthcare practitioners and older patients remains under-investigated. Design: Exploratory descriptive qualitative design. Methods: The methods are reported using the Consolidated Criteria for Reporting Qualitative Studies checklist. The setting comprised two acute medical wards in an urban hospital in Australia. Twenty-two nursing and allied healthcare practitioners used the TRANSITION tool to guide communication about transitional care with an older patient and then participated in an interview about their experience of using the tool. All data were thematically analysed. Findings: Healthcare practitioners reported their perceptions that the TRANSITION tool was feasible and acceptable, and that they perceived the tool supported them to know what to ask and to find out information regarding their patient's transitional care needs. Some ward-based nurses reported their perception that transitional care was not their role. Conclusions: Findings emphasise transitional care as a continuing care process that requires effective communication between nurses and older patients in acute medical wards. Relevance to clinical practice: Given shorter lengths of stay, complex care needs and slow recovery, ward-based nurses are vital in communicating with older patients about their transitional care needs. The TRANSITION tool may support communication between ward-based nurses and older patients to improve assessment and planning. Implementation of the tool will require a planned strategy to facilitate translation of the tool into routine practice of ward-based nurses to support their roles during older patients’ care transitions.



Journal of clinical nursing






2275 - 2284




Chichester, Eng.







Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal