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Interprofessional Collaborative Communication in Acute Care Hospital Teams (SCRIPT)

This study has been completed.
Health Canada
Information provided by:
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Identifier:
First received: April 25, 2007
Last updated: February 6, 2009
Last verified: April 2007
Collaborative practice may improve patient outcomes in specific disease conditions and health care settings. The SCRIPT Programme is an intervention to implement informal, but structured, communication etiquette between members of interprofessional ward-based clinical teaching units (CTUs) in General Internal Medicine (GIM) hospital divisions.

Condition Intervention
Disease Delivery of Healthcare Behavioral: Face-to-face communication interactions

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Health Services Research
Official Title: The SCRIPT Programme (GIM): Structuring Communication Relationships for Interprofessional Teamwork to Achieve Interprofessional Education for Collaborative Patient-Centered Practice (IECPCP)

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • unplanned hospital readmission 7 days post-discharge and 30 days post-discharge

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • length of stay in hospital for GIM patients' index admission
  • measurement survey of staff members' perceptions of interprofessional collaboration
  • patient satisfaction measured by a large standardized, cross-site survey regime
  • calls placed to staff members' paging devices
  • use of evidence-based, optimal prescription drug therapy

Estimated Enrollment: 1000
Study Start Date: April 2007
Study Completion Date: December 2008
Detailed Description:

A recent literature review commissioned by Health Canada for the Inter-Professional Education for Collaborative Patient-Centred Practice initiative (IECPCP) reported evidence that collaborative practice improves patient outcomes in specific populations. Interprofessional collaborative teaching and practicing are poorly articulated in the literature, however. Studies are needed that can develop a trial-based body of evidence to support education and practice of effective interprofessional care.

The SCRIPT project will attempt to develop sustainable transformation in the conduct, learning and evaluation of interprofessional teamwork in the Toronto Academic Health Science Network (TAHSN). SCRIPT has investigated interprofessional work relations in general internal medicine units at TAHSN hospitals using fieldwork observations and interview methods. These data were foundational for SCRIPT's design of a unit-based staff intervention intended to promote more--and more-effective--informal interprofessional communication and collaboration between GIM staff members outside of traditional, structured meeting times like morning report and bullet rounds.

The intervention is designed as part of a pragmatic trial. We will ask GIM division staff of intervention teams to implement a 4-step communication protocol in face-to-face, patient-related interaction. The steps are:

  1. introduce oneself by name;
  2. state one's role or responsibility in relation to the patient under discussion;
  3. describe the issue, problem, or plan relating to the target patient;
  4. elicit feedback from the other participant(s) in the interaction with a prompt, e.g., "do you have any concerns," or, "is there something else I should consider?"

The intervention will be evaluated as a cluster randomized controlled trial among five large Toronto (Canada) teaching hospitals. Two medical clinical teaching units and associated ward teams of nurses and other health professionals from each hospital's GIM division will be allocated at random to enact the intervention. Two other GIM CTUs in each hospital will continue their usual interprofessional practice, without intervention. In total, there are 20 CTUs, 10 in the treatment group and 10 in the control group. Intervention CTUs will be compared with control CTUs on the outcomes of interest.


Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Patients admitted to divisions of General Internal Medicine
  • Health care providers working in divisions of General Internal Medicine
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00466297

Canada, Ontario
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M4N 3M5
Mount Sinai Hospital
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5G 1X5
Sponsors and Collaborators
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Health Canada
Principal Investigator: Merrick Zwarenstein, MB BCh, MS Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  More Information

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number): Identifier: NCT00466297     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: Health Canada 102117
Study First Received: April 25, 2007
Last Updated: February 6, 2009

Keywords provided by Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre:
General internal medicine
Cluster randomized processed this record on August 23, 2017