HRO Tool of the Month: SBAR (video)

January 18, 2021  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources

At Michigan Medicine, we are committed to a culture of safety and reliability. As part of this commitment, we understand that clear, concise communication is essential. In highly reliable organizations, good communication is the best way to maintain situational awareness among team members and between units/departments. Communicating clearly can help reduce errors and build more trusting relationships.

Take a look at this Tool of the Month.

SBAR Refresh

SBARs are already being used by several departments across the organization. The tool has had a positive impact on communication and increased understanding on a variety of situations. It’s a way to structure your thoughts for clarity and understanding.

Michigan Medicine Safety Phrase: “May I have that in an SBAR?”

Situation: What is the immediate problem? The headline.

Background: What is the relevant history related to the situation?

Assessment: What is your review of the situation and your perception of the urgency of the action needed?

Recommendation: What is your request or recommendation?

Check out this SBAR example on disability accommodations:

Situation:  Clinic staff are not reliably aware of the accommodate needs of our patients prior to their appointments.

Background:  Patients may require accommodations for wheelchair needs, deaf/hard of hearing status, mental health conditions and sensory needs.  We have the ability to accommodate, but no process for ensuring we are “ready” for patients.

Assessment:  If we are not ready, this can result in delays in provider schedules, and delays in care. If we were able to “schedule” these accommodations along with an appointment or be aware of them upon arrival in the ER, we could quickly care for our patients without delays.

Recommendation:  Create documentation in MiChart to record known patient accommodations.

All teams across the organization are encouraged to use SBARs when needed. The SBAR tool can be used effectively in clinical and non-clinical settings as it is a great way to structure your thoughts and communicate clearly.

Resources for all

Please check out these resources for more clarification on this Universal Skill. There are downloadable and printable handouts that you can share with your team or hang in your areas.

SBAR Talking Points (Think, Say ,Do)
HRO Website