Taped report?

Specialties Med-Surg


Hi, I'm a new RN on a med-surg floor. I've been working three weeks (have a long way to go before I'm let loose with patients on my own, of course!) and so far I really like the job and am very happy to be working on this unit.

But I was surprised to find that the unit uses a taped report. I only came across taped reports once my first semester in nursing school, and my instructors thought it was really funny that a unit would "still" be doing that. So I never expected to come across it in real life again, several years later.

I'm trying to have a positive attitude about everything I come across (there are many differences in this hospital from what I'm used to). But I just don't "get" taped report. It seems to me that the nurses have to spend time taping, and then those coming on have to spend time getting the right tapes (sometimes pieced together from a couple of different nurses) and listening. The information doesn't seem all that useful to me, either. Most of the time everything I hear that seems important (to me--remember, I'm inexperienced) is already on the chart. And sometimes the tapes are "old news" if something important happened in the last hour. (It's also kind of funny... at this point, audiotapes are such obsolete technology.)

The units I worked on in nursing school, except for the one, used a combo verbal/written handoff. It was a very quick process and always seemed efficient to me. Occasionally the nurse who was ending shift was tied up with a patient when the new nurse came on, but the written handoff would be ready. Even if occasionally it wasn't--well, there's the chart right there.

Any opinions on this? It won't be too long before I'll have to be taping reports myself, and I want to have the right attitude about it. Right now I sometimes wonder why they bother listening at all.


38,333 Posts

They had just started this at a facility that I was leaving. Nobody liked the idea because of the added requirement to be "professional" since you never knew who would be listening to it.

suni, BSN, RN

477 Posts

Specializes in med surg.

we have taped report for a long time. It does save time if the person taping just does updates. I do not need to know a lot of useless details just tape the facts.


50 Posts

We tape every night. It works fine for us. The only bad thing is that you have to listen to report on everyone on the floor not just your patients.


985 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, educator.

The hospital that I work at stopped doing it because they said JCAHO issued a statement that report must be given in a manner that allows for questions to be asked and answered at that time, and should be timely as well. I think that as long as you understand report, JCAHO should keep their noses out of it!

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