The Value of Family-Centered Rounds

Department of Pediatrics Associate Professor Elizabeth Cox, MD, MPH, spoke to 300 community members about the importance of family-centered rounds at “Partnering with Patients in Health Care,” the most recent UW School of Medicine and Public Health (SMPH) Mini Med School, held June 4, 2015.

Picture of a Family-Centered Rounds ChecklistThe Family-Centered Rounds Checklist

Dr. Cox began by sharing the story of Josie King, an 18-month-old girl who in 2001 died from dehydration and a narcotic misuse while a patient at Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Josie’s story is now used to educate health care providers nationwide on patient safety and patient/family communication. It inspired Dr. Cox and colleagues to partner with families to improve safety and communication by redesigning family-centered rounds at American Family Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Cox invited Michelle Kelly, MD, to champion the multi-disciplinary effort, which included collaborating with families and patient advocates to develop a checklist to ensure that families are engaged in their child’s care during family-centered rounds.

“You have to be proactive in your son or daughter’s care, and [the medical team] being willing to let you ask those questions is important and makes you feel so much better,” recalled a parent. “When you leave here, you’re confident…in taking on whatever it is you’re going to have to do when you get home.”

Watch what families and advocates have to say about the checklist.

A Toolkit for Clinicians and Researchers

The research team has since created a family-centered rounds toolkit for health care organizations. The toolkit for clinicians includes the checklist itself, a training curriculum and supporting materials, data collection tools for performance assessment, and a model for offering maintenance of certification credit.

The toolkit for researchers includes methodological information about the development and implementation of the checklist.

“The checklist has helped to provide a framework for our staff with the key elements that are really important for patient safety and also for patient satisfaction,” said Barbara Byrne, DNSc, AFCH’s vice president of clinical operations.

Mini Med School sessions are interactive, community-oriented events designed to explore compelling health issues. Other speakers at this session were Meg Gaines, JD, LLM, and Sarah Davis, JD, MPA, director and associate director of the UW Center for Patient Partnerships (CPP); Rachel Grob, MS, PhD, director of national initiatives for the CPP and a senior scientist in the UW Department of Family Medicine and Community Health (DFMCH); Nancy Pandhi, MD, PhD, assistant professor in the DFMCH; and Marje Murray, director of geriatrics services at UW Hospital and Clinics.