Acute care toolkit 1: handover

Royal College of Physicians of London - RCP
Royal College of Physicians (RCP)
Publication date:
01 May 2011


Handover is the system by which the responsibility for immediate and ongoing care is transferred between healthcare professionals. Patients expect, and should have, a designated consultant and nurse to coordinate the multidisciplinary team. However, at times (e.g. night, weekends or during an emergency admission) the responsibility for care must pass from one team, or consultant, to another.

This toolkit focuses on handover, defining good handover, looking at the current problems often experienced, and setting out recommendations for improved, standardised handover protocols.