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Developing a sociocultural framework of compliance: An exploration of factors related to the use of early warning systems among acute care clinicians

Background: Early warning systems (EWS) are most effective when clinicians monitor patients' vital signs and comply with the recommended escalation of care protocols once deterioration is recognised. Objectives: To explore sociocultural factors influencing acute care clinicians' compliance with an early warning system commonly used in Queensland public hospitals in Australia. Methods: This interpretative qualitative study utilised inductive thematic analysis to analyse data collected from semi-structured interviews conducted with 30 acute care clinicians from Queensland, Australia. Results: This study identified that individuals and teams approached compliance with EWS in the context of 1) the use of EWS for patient monitoring; and 2) the use of EWS for the escalation of patient care. Individual and team compliance with monitoring and escalation processes is facilitated by intra and inter-professional factors such as acceptance and support, clear instruction, inter-disciplinary collaboration and good communication. Noncompliance with EWS can be attributed to intra and inter-professional hierarchy and poor communication. Conclusions: The overarching organisational context including the hospital's embedded quality improvement and administrative protocols (training, resources and staffing) impact hospital-wide culture and influence clinicians' and teams' compliance or non-compliance with early warning system's monitoring and escalation processes. Successful adoption of EWS relies on effective and meaningful interactions among multidisciplinary staff. © 2020 The Author(s).

Funding

Other

History

Volume

20

Start Page

1

End Page

9

Number of Pages

9

eISSN

1472-6963

Publisher

BioMed Central

Additional Rights

CC BY 4.0

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

Yes

Acceptance Date

02/08/2020

External Author Affiliations

Central Queensland Hospital and Health Services, Rockhampton

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

BMC Health Services Research