Utilizing technology to improve intraoperative family communication

M. M. Wieck, B. Blake, C. Sellick, D. Kenron, D. DeVries, S. Terry, Sanjay Krishnaswami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Purpose: To create and assess satisfaction with an electronic-medical-record (EMR) integrated communication system designed to optimize perioperative communication with families. Methods: We built a tool in the EMR's intraoperative nursing navigation screen for sending customized or standardized text pages to families in English or Spanish. Preoperatively, families were given text pagers with instructions and a hospital map to facilitate leaving the waiting area. After 6 months, Press-Ganey™ data and internal surveys from randomly selected families, and all nurses and surgeons were analyzed for satisfaction and effectiveness. Results: Press-Ganey™ data demonstrated 30% improvement in patient satisfaction (p < 0.05). Among families, > 90% indicated pagers were easy to use and provided the desired information during surgery. Of nurses, >90% found the system easy to use and believed it improved families' experience. All surgeons reported improved intraoperative communication and ease of finding families postoperatively. Conclusion: Perioperative family communication via EMR-integrated text improves efficiency and family, nurse, and surgeon satisfaction. Table of contents summary: Perioperative family communication through EMR-integrated text pagers is easily implemented and optimizes use of existing technology. Furthermore, it is transportable, customizable and results in improved efficiency and family, nurse, and surgeon satisfaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 10 2017


  • Electronic medical record
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Perioperative communication
  • Technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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