Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Mattie Burton


During childbirth, multiple providers deliver care at the bedside that requires optimal teamwork and communication to prevent patient harm. The complexity of caring for obstetrical patient demands a well-coordinated team to relay information and respond to conditions that can change quickly during childbirth. A patient safety strategy to prevent perinatal harm is Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety (TeamSTEPPS) training. TeamSTEPPS is an evidence-based program based on crew resource management (CRM) principles developed in the aviation and military industries. This process improvement project used the Plan-Do-Study-Act framework and Kotter's change theory to implement TeamSTEPPS training after an increase in patient safety events from 2014 to 2016. A convenience sample of 200 physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, scrub techs, and patient care techs from perinatal units completed the training in a community hospital setting. The Teamwork Perceptions Questionnaire administered pre- and posttraining show a statistical improvement in teamwork, communication, and situational awareness among nursing staff that correlated with a decrease in safety events. Project limitations include lack of a control group for comparison and lack of physician involvement with training. The positive social impact of TeamSTEPPS training is the decrease in maternal and newborn adverse events surrounding childbirth due to perinatal teams using CRM principles. Over the long term, TeamSTEPPs training may become the standard team training method to improve birth outcomes and support the establishment of a patient safety culture, which may be replicated in perinatal centers around the world.

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