Discovering the untapped benefits of team nursing in an acute haemodialysis unit of a major teaching hospital

Edward Zimbudzi


Background: Nursing duties in a haemodialysis setting can be performed using two main models which are primary and team nursing. The study sought to determine the most appropriate nursing care model in an acute haemodialysis unit (AHU) of a large metropolitan teaching hospital where primary nursing was replaced by the team nursing model on a trial basis.

Methods: Standard questionnaires were administered to nursing staff pre and post the introduction of team nursing to determine the effectiveness of primary and team nursing in our dialysis unit. Clinical charts were audited prior to the introduction of team nursing and three months after to detect deviations in appropriate standards of care. A descriptive statistical analysis of data was conducted to address the purpose of this study.

Results: Staff took an average of 37±4 days to review patient needs prior to the utilization of the TNC model and 5±3 days 3 months later. Handing over of patients improved from 25% to 65% and 25% of charts audited prior to the TNC model had errors compared to 13% after the introduction of team nursing. On a score of 0 to 10, the success of the PNC model had a mean of 5.2±2.5 compared to 8.3±0.7 for the TNC model.

Conclusion: The team nursing care model can be effectively applied in an acute haemodialysis setting without compromising patient care and the superiority of team nursing over primary nursing in this setting has also been reinforced.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

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

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