The implementation of evidence-based practice for the prevention/management of post-operative nausea and vomiting

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To bring the research evidence for the prevention/management of post-operative nausea and vomiting into clinical practice in the surgical services department of a community hospital.


Audit and feedback were used to lead organisational change at the project hospital. A team of key stakeholders was created and helped to bring change to the way post-operative nausea and vomiting was treated and managed at the institution. The Chief of Anesthesia, Assistant Chief Nursing Officer, Nurse Researcher, Director of Surgical Services, operating room manager, post-anaesthesia care unit manager, pre-admission testing nurse and author as team leader made up the change management team. Current compliance with the six criteria set forth as research evidence for the change was derived from a surgical chart audit. Strategies for changes to increase compliance were then developed by the team. For the next several months change management occurred.


There was a vast improvement in evidence-based practice following change management. Furthermore, post-operative nausea and vomiting decreased from 18% at the start to 5% nausea and 0% vomiting at the end.


Change management using audit and feedback is effective in changing organisational practice and in improving patient outcomes following surgery.

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