what's on your whiteboard?

  1. Hello all,

    First of all, let me get this out of the way... I'm Drew... not a nurse, but a technology researcher guy for healthcare. I've been asking some of my friends in nursing about their experiences, but I'd like to reach out to wider set of different opinions.

    I'm curious to hear some anecdotal stories about how nurses use their whiteboard to facilitate communication. There seems to be at least one at or near the nurse call station to track patients and bed status at the hospitals I've visited.

    What specific information is on YOUR whiteboard for YOUR ward? What I've seen... Room #, patient name, doc, nurse, admit date, lab/imaging order status, consults....

    Do you use a plain dry eraseboard as your whiteboard? Or do you use an electronic whiteboard (giant LCD/plasma) running special software that shows patient info from the hospital's computer system?


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    About snoopdrew

    Joined: Nov '10; Posts: 3


  3. by   K+MgSO4
    Not even that fancy!

    An A3 piece of paper with a printout of the census Pt name age doc diet. we then add in how they can travel to procedures (wheel chair or trolley) infection status (MRSA VRE CDiff) so that radiology is aware. There attachments (chest tubes, catheters) If they require O2.

    Sits with the ward clerk and she runs the show!
  4. by   mmutk
    You should repost or move this post to the ER forum. They frequently use electronic whiteboards and old fashion ones probably still exist somewhere. Frequently this whiteboard is electronic and displayed on large screens throughout the ERs.

    To protect privacy Vanderbilt's ER does not display the chief complaint or first name on thier public whiteboards in the ER. But behind the nurses station all the information is displayed.

    see patientflowcenter.com
  5. by   mmutk
    At the ER I currently work at CT and XRAY have the electronic whiteboard pulled up on their LCD/Plasmas too.

    When the nurse is ready for the patient to go to CT a nurse clicks on the CT ORDED button. In real time CT READY displays on the CT whiteboard, CT tech then calls for transport. When the CT is complete CT tech clicks the box again and CT DONE displays in realtime on all the electronic whiteboards.

    As soon as the radiologist reads the CT and gives a report CT COMPLETE displays automatically.
  6. by   BluegrassRN
    We have a white board in all our patient rooms with preprinted spaces for:

    Day and Date
    Physician name
    Nurse name
    Aide name
    Activity level
    Plan of care
    date and time of last bath
    date of last linen change

    It is the nurse's job to fill it out and update it as necessary. Some people hardly fill it out; I try to fill it out pretty thoroughly. I think it helps reinforce to the patient: this is who is responsible for you, this is what we are doing for you. Grandma, no more complaining to your family that no one has given you a bath since admission: it's right there on the board that you were bathed today at 9:30 am.

    It answers a lot of questions, if used properly.
  7. by   Penelope_Pitstop
    Ours shows patients' initials and attendings, and is color coded (red for females, blue for males). Organized by room.

    We are HIGH TECH!
  8. by   BluegrassRN
    Okay, I misread the OP. The white boards I described are in each pt room, facilitating communication between the pt and staff.

    We have a white board at the desk with each pt's name, the doc's name, the assigned nurse, and if there is an intent to discharge, we'll put that date up. We have little magnets that indicate if the pt is in isolation, down in xray, or if the admit is not finished.

    That's all.
  9. by   annabeap
    I work inpatient pediatrics. My unit has a big whiteboard in the nurse's station/room. It's more of an organizational tool, so we can easily see our floor status at-a-glance.

    Rm # is listed, with pt's last name on color-coded paper (each color stands for the specialty team following the pt), their acuity number, special magnets saying if pt is in isolation/precautions, neutropenic, has allergies, etc. The staff on duty have their names/magnets listed below with their rm assignments. Both RN's and Tech's have a shift leader, which is marked on the board. There's a spot for pending admissions, and discharged pts.

    I think it works quite nice- sometimes we update how many beds/cribs are in each room too, which helps shift leaders find a room that's ready/appropriate. It's not terribly hard to follow, and it's not so much info that it's overwhelming to look at.
  10. by   TheOldestNurseOnUnit
    At our facility it's the following:

    Full date including day written out; the month abbreviated the date & the year

    The RN's 1st name

    The Charge Nurse's 1st name

    The CNA's 1st name

    The anticipated discharged date.

    Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2010




    Nov. 11, 2010

    If the patient is being vitaled more frequently d/t a problem or is post-op; the CNA frequently will write the latest set of vitals as well as the time on the board to ensure the nurse sees it also.

    We have 1 CNA who always draws a smiley face and puts the patient's room phone number on their board also. It really helps our elderly patients.

    Hope this helps.
  11. by   chasingmydreams
    Hi Drew,

    I work in a small rehab facility. We have a large dry erase board with pt first name and room number. The board is a large grid broke down in 30 min increments and PT, OT and ST use magnets with each therapist name to block out their scheduled times. This allows staff and pts to look at the board and know who they will be working with and where at a glance. Nursing also can block out time for any treatments they need to schedule.

    In each pt room is a board with the day and date, nurse, cna and we also write their therapy schedule for the day on that board as well. We also see notes of love and encouragement pop up on those boards from family and staff.

    Hope that helps :spin:
  12. by   PetiteOpRN
    At the desk: 2 LCD screen that show the RM#, patient name, surgeons, alerts (ie latex allergy), procedure, circulator, scrub, estimated time, public comments.

    In each room: A dry erase board that has the patient's name and DOB, site, procedure, allergies, perioperative medication requests, imaging needed during the procedure, specimen anticipated, implants that we need, blood products available, post-op destination, miscellaneous concerns, and a list of every person in the room.
  13. by   Flo.
    At the nursing station: A huge white board with the 3 first letters of pt's last name and first inital, doc following, pt acuity, and any contact precautions.

    In pts room: a white board with date room#, phone#, name pt like to be called,
    goal for the shift, prn meds taken, precautions, code status, a section for pt/ot.
  14. by   OttawaRPN
    Quote from PetiteOpRN
    In each room: A dry erase board that has the patient's name and DOB, site, procedure, allergies, perioperative medication requests, imaging needed during the procedure, specimen anticipated, implants that we need, blood products available, post-op destination, miscellaneous concerns, and a list of every person in the room.
    This whiteboard business is new to me, I work at 3 hospitals and have yet to see one in a patient's room. But with all the above info. clearly visible to everyone who enters the room, does that not breach confidentiality issues?