Implementation of an Innovative, Multiunit, Postevent Debriefing Program in a Children's Hospital

Pediatr Emerg Care. 2020 Jul;36(7):345-346. doi: 10.1097/PEC.0000000000001898.


Background: Postevent debriefing has been associated with improved resuscitation outcomes and is recommended by the American Heart Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics to improve clinical performance.

Objective: Despite the benefits of postevent debriefing, published debriefing programs have focused on single areas within a hospital. We are unaware of any hospital-wide debriefing programs implemented in a pediatric setting.

Methods: We established a multidisciplinary, interprofessional debriefing collaborative at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to implement postevent debriefings in multiple areas of the hospital. The collaborative created a standardized debriefing form to capture data about the postevent debriefings.

Results: From July 23, 2015 to December 31, 2017, the emergency department performed 153 debriefings (18%) for 850 resuscitations. The neonatal intensive care unit conducted 10 debriefings (9%) for 107 resuscitations, and the pediatric intensive care unit performed 5 debriefings (7%) for 73 resuscitations.

Conclusions: Several departments at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia have incorporated hot and cold debriefings into their clinical practice as part of their continuous quality improvement programs. By disseminating the tools and lessons learned from the implementation process, the collaborative hopes that other institutions will benefit from their lessons learned to successfully create their own debriefing programs. Widespread adoption of debriefing programs will enable a more scientific approach to studying the outcomes of debriefing.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Emergency Service, Hospital / organization & administration*
  • Formative Feedback*
  • Hospitals, Pediatric / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Organizational Innovation*
  • Patient Care Team
  • Philadelphia
  • Quality Improvement