Effect of SBAR situational awareness technique as educational intervention on critical care nurse students' skills of patient safety

Asmaa Ahmed Morsy, Fatma Refaat Ahmed


Background: Situation awareness could actively scan for risk across multiple domains. It has been defined as “the perception of elements in the environment within a volume of time and space, the comprehension of their meaning, and the projection of their status in the near future”. Situation awareness includes three levels; perception, comprehension, and projection. Perception is the first step in developing situation awareness as it includes students' perception of status, attributes, and dynamics of relevant elements in the ICU environment. Comprehension of the present situation is based on outputs of the perception. It includes understanding of the significance of the relevant elements. Finally, projection of future status includes the ability of students to predict the future actions of certain elements in the ICU environment. Appropriate situation awareness could increase the probability of a good task performance. In addition, feedback covers state of the ICU environment affected by both decisions and performance of the selected actions. While SBAR is acromion that represents the actual application of situational awareness through situation, background, assessment and recommendation. A representation of SBAR situational awareness has been depicted as an inner factor in the method for giving patient consideration and basic leadership that helps health care professionals to handle and process information about what is occurring. SBAR is a mechanism useful for framing any conversation, especially critical ones, requiring a practitioner's immediate attention and action to foster a culture of patient safety. Critical care nurses play an important role in their workplace related to patient safety. They should be able to recognize and analyze patient safety incidents using protocols, work in a team, learn from errors, and be able to identify actions and recommendations on how to prevent patient safety incidents through the use of SBAR situational awareness technique. Nursing students’ should recognize and understand what is going on around them. Consequently, they can plan ahead with greater knowledge to patient safety which arise the need to integrate SBAR situation awareness in their curricula.

Method: A quasi experimental research design was used in this study in which two tools were used for data collection: “Self-Situational Awareness Assessment Questionnaire” and “Critical Care Nurse Students’ Safety Skills Checklist”.

Results: There was a statistical significant difference between both groups of students in relation to situation awareness perception, process and skills (p < .001). Moreover, there was a statistical significant difference between the study and control groups in relation to the students' practices score regarding patients’ safety standards in the post-assessment phase (p < .001).

Conclusion: In the current study, the SBAR situation awareness technique was used in training critical care nurse students to improve their situation awareness level to patient safety skills. Situation awareness perception, process and skills level were significantly increased for critical care nurse students who are subjected to the training program. Also, the students' skills regarding patients' safety standards practices were significantly improved. 

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/jnep.v10n5p47

Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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