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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Nighttime cross-coverage is associated with decreased intensive care unit mortality. A single-center study.

Amaral ACK-B, Barros BS, Barros CCPP, et al. American journal of respiratory and critical care medicine. 2014;189:1395-401.

This study revealed that cross-coverage, in which physicians care for patients they have learned about through handoffs, was associated with lower mortality in the intensive care unit. This finding counters persisting concerns about harm related to discontinuity of care. The authors suggest that an independent assessment by a second physician may mitigate cognitive errors.