Ward stories: lessons learned from patient perception of the ward round

  • Gemma ReddinEmail author
  • Niall F Davis
  • Kenneth Mc Donald
Original Article



Ward rounds (WR) are an invaluable part of the hospital day allowing for daily assessment of each patient and their treatment, perhaps the most crucial role of the WR is information transfer.


This study investigated inpatient’s perception of the cardiology and urology WR; in particular, it examined patient-doctor communication.


Inpatients were interviewed to explore pertinent areas concerning the WR; a questionnaire was subsequently developed which analysed four aspects: information-giving and communication, emotional reaction, professionalism, and privacy.


One hundred sixty-eight inpatients completed the questionnaire. Professionalism and privacy scored highly. Emotional reaction was neutral, and information-giving and communication was poorly scored which was attributed to the use of medical jargon, apparent time constraints and patients perceived inopportunity to ask questions.


The presented data underlines a weakness in knowledge transfer to the patient during the ward round which may have a detrimental impact on post discharge morbidity where understanding and treatment adherence is critical. Improving communication is vital to establishing the WR as a practice of significance in order to deliver superior, safe patient-centred care.


Communication Medical education Patient-centred care Patient perception Ward round 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

11845_2019_1975_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.2 mb)
ESM 1 (DOC 1246 kb)


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Copyright information

© Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.St Vincent’s University HospitalDublinIreland
  2. 2.Washington DCUSA

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