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Effects of Rounding on Patient Satisfaction and Patient Safety on a Medical-Surgical Unit


doi: 10.1097/NUR.0b013e3181a8ca8a

Purpose: This project examines an intervention developed to decrease patient uncertainty regarding nurse availability for response to immediate needs, leading to higher patient satisfaction scores and improved patient safety.

Background/Rationale: Research supports the premise that frequent patient rounding has a positive impact on patient satisfaction and safety. Rounding has been noted to elevate patients' certainty for their needs. When a rounding model is practiced, patients become more certain that a nurse will be available for immediate needs (assistance to the bathroom, pain interventions, or addressing questions about care).

Description of the Innovation: Rounds are completed by the charge nurse every 2 hours and include addressing the "4 P's." The 4 P's encompass the assessment of pain, potty, position, and presence. Using Mishel's Uncertainty of Illness model as a basis, the concept of help uncertainty is defined for this clinical project.

Outcomes: A marked increase in patient satisfaction and decrease in call-light frequency have been revealed. The unit's rate of falls has declined since the initiation of the rounding model.

Conclusion: A routine presence of a registered nurse has promoted patient safety as seen by the declining falls scores. Patient certainty of nurse presence and the trust in the nursing care have flourished since the implementation of this model and are evidenced in the increasing patient satisfaction scores and patient surveys.

Implications: The implications to nursing practice based on these outcomes are that a routine rounding practice by the charge nurse will serve to improve patient safety and satisfaction.

Author Affiliations: Clarian Health-Indiana University Hospital, Indiana.

Corresponding author: Jennifer L. Woodard, MSN, RN-BC, 740 Viewpoint Dr, Plainfield, IN 46168 (;

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.