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Caring for the healthcare professional: A description of the Schwartz Rounds™ implementation

Keith Adamson (University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada) (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada)
Nancy Searl (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada)
Sonia Sengsavang (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada) (Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Canada)
John Yardley (Metrics@Work, St Catharines, Canada)
Mark George (Metrics@Work, St Catharines, Canada)
Peter Rumney (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada)
Judy Hunter (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada)
Sakeena Myers-Halbig (Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, Canada)

Journal of Health Organization and Management

ISSN: 1477-7266

Article publication date: 17 May 2018

Issue publication date: 17 May 2018

Abstract

Purpose

Hospitals must systematically support employees in innovative ways to uphold a culture of care that strengthens the system. At a leading Canadian academic pediatric rehabilitation hospital, over 90 percent of clinicians viewed Schwartz Rounds™ (SR) as a hospital priority, resulting in its formal implementation as a quality improvement initiative. The purpose of this paper is to describe how the hospital implemented SR to support the socio-emotional impact of providing care.

Design/methodology/approach

This quantitative descriptive study provides a snapshot of the impact of each SR through online surveys at four assessment points (SR1-SR4). A total of 571 responses were collected.

Findings

All four SR addressed needs of staff as 92.9-97.6 percent of attendees reported it had a positive impact, and 96.4-100 percent of attendees reported each SR was relevant. Attendees reported significantly greater communication with co-workers after each SR (p<0.001) and more personal conversations with supervisors after SR2 and SR4 (p<0.05) compared to non-attendees. Attending SR also increased their perspective-taking capacity across the four SR.

Practical implications

As evidenced in this quality improvement initiative, SR addresses staff’s need for time to process the socio-emotional impacts of care and to help reduce those at risk for compassion fatigue. SR supports and manages the emotional healthcare culture, which has important implications for quality patient care.

Originality/value

This research details an organization’s process to implement SR and highlights the importance of taking care of the care provider.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank all the staff who participated in this evaluation and project. The authors gratefully acknowledge Sonia Pagura for her review of the manuscript, the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare for their partnership, as well as the Schwartz committee/intervention team at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital for their support and commitment to this important initiative. This research study was funded by a Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation grant awarded to the first author. The Foundation’s role in the research process was only limited to reviewing and approving the grant proposal that was submitted to the Foundation for the research grant. Given the managerial roles of some of the investigators at the hospital, it was imperative that a third-party research group managed the data collection to mitigate any conflicts of interest that participants (who were clinical staff at the hospital) may have foreseen. As such, the online survey was administered, distributed and managed by the third-party research group.

Citation

Adamson, K., Searl, N., Sengsavang, S., Yardley, J., George, M., Rumney, P., Hunter, J. and Myers-Halbig, S. (2018), "Caring for the healthcare professional: A description of the Schwartz Rounds™ implementation", Journal of Health Organization and Management, Vol. 32 No. 3, pp. 402-415. https://doi.org/10.1108/JHOM-05-2017-0103

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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