Utility of a standardized sign-out card for new medical interns

Lawrence H. Lee, James A. Levine, Henry J. Schultz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Conscientious sign-out between medical interns is important for the continuity of care of hospitalized patients. We developed a standardized sign-out card that prompted the intern going off duty to transmit patient care information to the intern on call. The card was tested in a prospective, randomized, controlled trial in which one group of interns used the card, and another group did not. Any instance of poor sign-out was reported on a questionnaire completed by the intern who had been on call the previous night. The group using the sign-out cards reported poor sign-out on 8 nights (5.8% of questionnaires), and the control group reported it on 17 nights (14.9% of questionnaires, p = .016). The card was time-effective and inexpensive, resulted in more complete data recording, and possibly decreased the morbidity associated with poor sign-out.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)753-755
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of General Internal Medicine
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996


  • continuity of patient care
  • graduate medical education
  • internship
  • residency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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