2014 Verweij Study Review

The reviewed study published in 2014 is written by Verweij et al. (2014) and is concerned with medical error reduction. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of wearing drug round tabards in terms of medical error incidence. Verweij et al. (2014) utilized the mixed-method design to identify the exact changes in medical error rate and nurses’ perspectives regarding this practice. Regarding the quantitative data, the researchers employed descriptive statistics and univariable linear regression. Qualitative data were collected with the help of focus group discussions and personal inquiries (Verweij et al., 2014). It was found that interruption during drug rounds was reduced by 75%, and a 66% decrease in medical error incidence was identified. As for nurses’ perceptions, Verweij et al. (2014) reported that nurses had concerns regarding their appearance and the way patients see them. Nursing professionals had mixed views on the effectiveness of tabards, stating that those items were useless or helpful in some occasions only.

Based on the findings mentioned above, it is possible to draw at least three conclusions. For example, quantitative data showed that wearing tabards led to a decrease in the medical error rate and interruptions (which can be the reason for this reduction). Thus, the initiative in question has quite well-pronounced positive outcomes related to patient safety and quality management. The second conclusion that can be made is associated with nurses’ perceptions. It is possible to note that nurses have quite negative attitudes towards wearing tabards. The third conclusion to be made is linked to the limitations of the study. The sample size is quite limited, and the focus on a single healthcare facility is also a significant limitation. The staff of the hospital may have quite homogenous attitudes due to some aspects of organizational culture, personal links, and so on. The number of participants is also quite limited, which has a negative effect on the generalizability of the data.

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The review of this study can identify particular implications for clinical practice. First, wearing drug round tabards is an effective incentive that can be implemented in diverse clinical settings. Nurses can wear such tabards, which may result in a meaningful reduction in medical error. However, Verweij et al. (2014) shed light on nurses’ perspectives concerning the practice, which leads to another implication. When launching the project involving drug round tabards, it is important to use an effective change model. It can be Lewin’s framework, and the focus should be on creating a sense of urgency, as well as re-freezing. On the one hand, nurses should clearly see the benefits of the incentive and be motivated to wear tabards. On the other hand, the initiative should become a common practice similar to hand hygiene as it should evoke no negative attitudes or concerns. The third implication is associated with advocacy and quality management. Nurses can be motivated to discuss other ways to reduce medical errors and interruptions. Trying these strategies and researching their implication will contribute to finding effective methods to address the problem.

In conclusion, it is necessary to note that the reviewed study aimed at evaluating a medical error reduction intervention involving wearing the tabard. The incentive proved to be effective due to the reduction in the mentioned variables, but nurses’ perspectives regarding the practice were negative. Further research, can involve a larger sample and more healthcare facilities to improve the generalizability of findings. It can also be effective to explore patients’ attitudes toward the practice.


Verweij, L., Smeulers, M., Maaskant, J. M., & Vermeulen, H. (2014). Quiet please! Drug round tabards: Are they effective and accepted? A mixed method study. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 46(5), 340-348. Web.

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