A Survey of Handoff Practices in Emergency Medicine

Chad Kessler, Faizan Shakeel, H. Gene Hern, Jonathan S. Jones, Jim Comes, Christine Kulstad, Fiona A. Gallahue, Boyd David Burns, Barry J. Knapp, Maureen Gang, Moira Davenport, Ben Osborne, Larissa I. Velez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


This study aimed to assess practices in emergency department (ED) handoffs as perceived by emergency medicine (EM) residency program directors and other senior-level faculty and to determine if there are deficits in resident handoff training. This cross-sectional survey study was guided by the Kern model for medical curriculum development. A 12-member Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors (CORD) Transitions in Care task force of EM physicians performed these steps and constructed a survey. The survey was distributed to the CORD listserv. There were 147 responses to the anonymous survey, which were collected using an online tool. At least 41% of the 158 American College of Graduate Medical Education EM residency programs were represented. More than half (56.6%) of responding EM physicians reported that their ED did not use a standardized handoff. There also exists a dearth of formal handoff training and handoff proficiency assessments for EM residents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)408-414
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Quality
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 12 2014


  • handoff
  • shift change
  • sign-out
  • transfer of care
  • transitions in care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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