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Hospital Rapid Response Teams Need Training

Teams are effective but require good communication

FRIDAY, May 10 (HealthDay News) -- While hospital rapid response teams are effective in managing patients at risk or in crisis, team members need teamwork and good communication, according to a study published in the May issue of the American Journal of Critical Care.

Linda Searle Leach, R.N., Ph.D., from the University of California Los Angeles, and Ann M. Mayo, R.N., D.N.Sc., from the University of San Diego, interviewed 17 members of rapid response teams and observed nine events that involved a rapid response team to identify factors associated with effective performance.

The researchers identified five factors that were most important in determining the effectiveness of the rapid response team: organizational culture, team structure, expertise, communication, and teamwork. Although health professionals reported that the teams functioned well in managing patients, teams were loosely coupled and team members had few opportunities to develop relationships or team skills.

"The need for team training may be greater than that among teams that work together regularly under less time pressure to perform," Leach and Mayo conclude. "Communication between team members and managing a crisis were critical aspects of an effective response team."

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