Aim: To explore, through the patient's perspective, how patient–provider communication is linked to missed nursing care vs. meeting patients’ fundamental care needs. Background: Missed nursing care causes severe consequences for patients. Person-centred fundamental care, in which communication is central, provides an approach to manage this challenge. However, the specific patient–provider communications linked to care outcomes are unknown. Methods: Case study using secondary analysis of observations and interviews. A purposeful sample of 20 patients with acute abdominal pain collected using ethnographic methodology at one emergency department and two surgical wards. The Fundamentals of Care framework guided the analysis. Results: Communications that included the patient as an equal member of the care team were observed to make a difference between adequate and missed nursing care. Four categories were identified: interpersonal respect, humanized context of care, available and accessible communication channels, and mutual holistic understanding of the care needs and care plan. Conclusion: Communication can be an essential tool to avoid missed nursing care and address the critical need for nursing managers to restore the fundamentals of care. Implications for Nursing Management: Nursing managers can use this new knowledge of communication to facilitate person-centred fundamental care and thereby avoid missed nursing care.
- acute care
- case reports
- fundamentals of care framework
- person-centred care