1. Thomas, Tyler S. DNP, RN
  2. Chance, Kasey DNP, BSN, FNP-C
  3. Spurlock, Amy PhD, RN


Background: In light of the complex advances in neonatal intensive care units (NICU), it is essential that healthcare providers (HCPs) are equipped with the appropriate skills to effectively communicate between disciplines to provide safe, quality care. However, many HCPs acknowledge that they are not confident in their ability to communicate effectively with peers.


Purpose and Design: This study aimed to identify perceived barriers and facilitators of communication among HCPs in a NICU setting. This study took place in a 60-bed NICU that utilized multiple disciplines of HCPs. Using a qualitative, cross-sectional design, 2 surveys were administered, namely, a demographic survey with open-ended questions and the Safety Attitudes Questionnaire (SAQ).


Results: Findings indicated inverse relationships in age/experience and perceptions of management. Total SAQ scores ranged from 45 to 77 (N = 28, M = 62.47, SD = 9.40). The SAQ highlight that total scores above 75 correspond with positive perceptions of safety in the NICU.


Conclusion: The statistical evidence derived from this study contributes to the evaluation of HCP-perceived communication barriers and facilitators. The identification of perceived barriers and facilitators of communication in an ICU setting may serve as a distinct, evidence-based foundation to develop interventions that emphasize the value of communication.