Objective: To investigate the prevalence and format of medical morning handover report (MMHR) in Australian hospitals.
Design, setting and participants: Questionnaire survey faxed to 76 Australian hospitals accredited for basic physician training by the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP). The survey was conducted in 2005.
Main outcome measures: Use of MMHR; structure and format of meetings.
Results: 53 of 76 (70%) hospitals responded. However, some data (1.7% of possible responses) were missing or illegible. Prevalence of the use of MMHR in respondent hospitals was 58% (31/53). Analysing the data by RACP accreditation level, 18/24 Level 3 hospitals (75%) conducted MMHR compared with 5/9 Level 2 hospitals (56%) and 7/18 Level 1 hospitals (39%) (odds ratio [OR] for trend, 2.17; 95% CI, 1.12-4.23; P = 0.023). 44 of 53 respondents reported their Rural, Remote and Metropolitan Areas (RRMA) classification. MMHR is less likely to be held in hospitals in regions classified as RRMA 2-4 (8/21 [38%]) than those in capital cities (RRMA 1) (16/23 [70%]) (OR, 0.27; 95% CI, 0.08-0.95; P = 0.042). In 62% of hospitals, MMHR was chaired by a consultant, and at most hospitals (23/31 [74%]), meetings were 15-30 minutes long.
Conclusions: In spite of RACP accreditation requirements, the use of MMHR in Australian hospitals accredited for basic physician training is low.