Learning to liaise: using medication administration role-play to develop teamwork in undergraduate nurses

Carolyn Hayes, Tamara Power, Patricia M. Davidson, John Daly, Debra Jackson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Aim: To describe undergraduate nursing students’ situational awareness and understanding of effective liaison and collaboration within the nursing team during interrupted medication administration. Background: Medication errors related to interruptions are a major problem in health care, impacting on patient morbidity and mortality and increasing the burden of related costs. Effective liaison, teamwork and situation awareness are requisite skills for nurses to facilitate the safe management of interruptions during medication administration. Method: A role-play simulation was offered to 528 second-year undergraduate Bachelor of Nursing students. Qualitative written reflective responses were subsequently collected and subject to thematic analysis to derive themes. Results: Participants (451:528) reported an improved understanding of an unfamiliar and challenging situation that required cooperation and collaboration amongst the nursing team to improve outcomes. Conclusion(s): This simulation exposed undergraduate nurses with limited clinical experience to a situation otherwise unavailable to them. The skills required to engage in effective liaison and teamwork in dynamic situations are vital elements in achieving quality care and must begin to be taught at an undergraduate level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)278-287
Number of pages10
JournalContemporary Nurse
Issue number4-5
StatePublished - Sep 3 2019


  • distractions
  • interruptions
  • medication errors
  • nursing
  • role-play
  • teamwork

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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