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Bedside Shift-to-Shift Handoffs: A Systematic Review of the Literature

Mardis, Tyler BS; Mardis, Matt BS; Davis, Joshua BA; Justice, Ellen M. MLIS, AHIP; Riley Holdinsky, Stacie BSN, RN-BC; Donnelly, John MD; Ragozine-Bush, Heather MD; Riesenberg, Lee Ann PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/NCQ.0000000000000142

Multiple institutions identify communication and shift-to-shift handoffs as a source of clinical errors. Conducting handoffs at the bedside has been proposed as a potential solution to improve the quality of communication at change of shift. This article reports a systematic review of English-language research articles, published between January 1, 2008, and October 31, 2014, focused on bedside shift-to-shift handoffs. Forty-one articles were identified and analyzed in this systematic review.

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Department of Anesthesiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham (Messrs T. Mardis and M. Mardis and Dr Riesenberg); Sidney Kimmel Medical College (Mr Davis) and Department of Internal Medicine and Pediatrics (Dr Donnelly), Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware (Mss Justice and Holdinsky and Drs Donnelly and Ragozine-Bush).

Correspondence: Lee Ann Riesenberg, PhD, RN, Department of Anesthesiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 619 South 19th St, JT909, Birmingham, AL 35249 (

Partial funding for research assistants was provided by Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware, through the resident research grant. The authors thank Dolores Moran, Medical Library Assistant II, and Amos J Wright, Associate Professor, for their assistance in locating articles, and Raj Patel, Christopher Mitchell, and Sagar Patel for their work as research assistants.

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citations appear in the printed text and are provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal's Web site (

Accepted for publication: May 10, 2015

Published ahead of print: July 17, 2015

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