Implementing IPASS Handoff to Improve Patient Safety in Pediatric Critical Care Transport

Published:January 16, 2023DOI:



      The aim of this study was to implement a standardized, hospital-based bedside handoff report (IPASS [Illness severity, Patient summary, Action items, Situational awareness, and Synthesis]) in prehospital pediatric critical care transport to increase patient safety by eliminating the risk of misreporting or omitting critical patient care information received before arrival at a tertiary care center. The setting for this project was a level 1 pediatric trauma center in the Southern United States.


      Pre- and postsurveys were used to assess staff perception of clinical handoff comprehensiveness and satisfaction with the use of a standardized IPASS handoff tool.


      Improvement was identified in 6 of 8 survey items. Team members were better able to hear all the information provided in the handoff, the format was functional, and physical transfers of patients from the transport team to the ED went more smoothly. Overall, satisfaction of the handoff process increased by 80%.


      Many factors contribute to patient safety events and errors in health care, with communication failures contributing to the majority. Overall, findings support the use of standardized IPASS handoffs in pediatric critical care transport to promote patient safety, increase comprehension of patient information, and increase staff satisfaction.
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