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  1. Gabriel, Paula M. MSN, RN, CCRN, CMC
  2. Smith, Kirsten MSN, RN, CNS, BC
  3. Mullen-Fortino, Margaret PhD, RN
  4. Ballinghoff, James DNP, MBA, RN, NEA-BC
  5. Holland, Sara DNP, RN
  6. Cacchione, Pamela Z. PhD, RN, CRNP, BC, FGSA, FAAN


Background: Debriefing is used in clinical settings to support interprofessional staff, improve processes, and identify educational needs. Nurses who lead debriefing sessions are empowered to improve processes.


Problem: Nurse leaders identified the need for debriefing outside the critical care areas due to the rising acuity levels.


Approach: Two nurse leaders developed a debriefing initiative in one urban teaching hospital following rapid responses, codes, and stressful situations. Nurses developed a Debriefing Facilitation Guide to collect qualitative aspects of clinical emergencies to improve processes, education, and team dynamics.


Outcomes: Following each debriefing session, we deductively purposively coded the qualitative data into 3 a priori themes: the American Heart Association's team dynamics, process improvement, and educational opportunities. We identified opportunities for improvement for these themes during our first 54 debriefing sessions.


Conclusions: Following each debriefing session, the debriefing nurse leader intervened on all educational and process improvement opportunities identified and facilitated positive team dynamics.