Teamwork and clinical error reporting among nurses in Korean hospitals

Jee In Hwang, Jeonghoon Ahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Summary Purpose To examine levels of teamwork and its relationships with clinical error reporting among Korean hospital nurses. Methods The study employed a cross-sectional survey design. We distributed a questionnaire to 674 nurses in two teaching hospitals in Korea. The questionnaire included items on teamwork and the reporting of clinical errors. We measured teamwork using the Teamwork Perceptions Questionnaire, which has five subscales including team structure, leadership, situation monitoring, mutual support, and communication. Using logistic regression analysis, we determined the relationships between teamwork and error reporting. Results The response rate was 85.5%. The mean score of teamwork was 3.5 out of 5. At the subscale level, mutual support was rated highest, while leadership was rated lowest. Of the participating nurses, 522 responded that they had experienced at least one clinical error in the last 6 months. Among those, only 53.0% responded that they always or usually reported clinical errors to their managers and/or the patient safety department. Teamwork was significantly associated with better error reporting. Specifically, nurses with a higher team communication score were more likely to report clinical errors to their managers and the patient safety department (odds ratio = 1.82, 95% confidence intervals [1.05, 3.14]). Conclusions Teamwork was rated as moderate and was positively associated with nurses' error reporting performance. Hospital executives and nurse managers should make substantial efforts to enhance teamwork, which will contribute to encouraging the reporting of errors and improving patient safety.

Original languageEnglish
Article number118
Pages (from-to)14-20
Number of pages7
JournalAsian Nursing Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (grant no. NRF-2012R1A1A2008214 ).

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2015, Korean Society of Nursing Science.


  • cooperative behavior
  • medical errors
  • nurses
  • patient safety
  • safety management


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