Answer to "What learner groups is handover of care best delivered to?"


It is appropriate at undergraduate and postgraduate levels for any healthcare professionals who are involved in transferring information and responsibility for patient care between healthcare staff and settings.


Handover education should ideally be multi-professional to reflect the reality of clinical practice, aid communication between practitioners and improve patient safety standards. It is also important for addressing communication across and within professional hierarchies. However, published evidence indicates that most handover education occurs in mono-professional groups, so multi-professional approaches are currently rare.


More recent published interventions have highlighted the role of such authentic, rather than simulated, multiprofessional teams as the cornerstone of such teaching interventions. This has been demonstrated to be a key method in simulation of handover to address the key theoretical learning elements discussed previously and is not seen using simulated teams. Whilst this presents pragmatic challenges, this is a key element to try and incorporate.


Further reading

Ebben, R. H., van Grunsven, P. M., Moors, M. L., Aldenhoven, P., et al. (2015) ‘A tailored e-learning program to improve handover in the chain of emergency care: a pre-test post-test study’, Scandinavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine, 23(1), p. 33.

Gordon, M., Hill, E., Stojan, J. N. and Daniel, M. (2018) ‘Educational Interventions to Improve Handover in Health Care: An Updated Systematic Review’, Academic Medicine, 93(8), pp. 1234–1244.

WHO (2007) ‘Communication During Patient Hand-Overs’. World Health Organisation. Available at: (Accessed: 12 March 2019).