1. O'Toole, Rosie BA, RN

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I have had only good experiences with taped reports ("Shift to Shift,"Editorial, September 2004). In the past, we used face-to-face reporting at our hospital when the night shift showed up, but only after they'd stored their belongings, talked to friends, grumbled about new policies, and so on. When they were ready to receive report, however, my nursing duties required me to be giving pain medications or responding to families' concerns, which resulted in more delays. And the in-person reports were given at the nursing station, where noise levels were high and confidentiality was lacking.


Now I go to a quiet, empty room, close the door, collect my thoughts, and give a complete report. I can report to one nurse and return later and finish if I'm interrupted. And I'm able to prioritize the last hour of my day. When night shift workers come in, they are given report in a quiet atmosphere-they can ask questions or be updated as needed. The day shift leaves only when the night shift accepts the report and has no more questions.


Diana Mason's editorial seemed to imply that taped reports were initiated to cut costs by eliminating overlapping shifts. But it benefits both shifts; before taped reports the night shift complained that they started their shift late and had to play catch-up whenever a report was interrupted, and day-shift workers complained that they couldn't count on being able to leave on time. So it's great if the hospital is happy that there's less overlap-nurses are happy too.


Rosie O'Toole, BA, RN


Manchester, NH