A critical discourse analysis of a Queensland Coronial Investigation Report

PhD by Publication

Serginson, Samantha Jane. 2021. A critical discourse analysis of a Queensland Coronial Investigation Report. PhD by Publication Master of Professional Studies. University of Southern Queensland. https://doi.org/10.26192/q7q9v

A critical discourse analysis of a Queensland Coronial Investigation Report

TypePhD by Publication
AuthorSerginson, Samantha Jane
1. FirstA/Pr Coralie Graham
2. SecondRobyn Henderson
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameMaster of Professional Studies
Number of Pages98
PublisherUniversity of Southern Queensland
Place of PublicationAustralia
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.26192/q7q9v

Patient safety is an important issue for hospitals. However, despite efforts to reduce patient harm, adverse events continue to occur. Sudden or unexplained death, the most serious outcome of patient harm, requires mandatory reporting to the coroner. This study set out to examine the language used in coronial investigation reports, as a way of exploring a new perspective of patient safety. Using critical discourse analysis, the study has examined a coronial investigation report published in May 2020 and relating to a March 2018 death in a health care facility. Using Fairclough's (1989) model and method of critical discourse analysis (CDA), the thesis examined the ways in which language is used in the coronial investigation report that frames patient safety. The analysis of the language indicated three discourses: legal, medical, and patient safety/harm. It identified the de-personalised nature of the interactional context of the report and the narrow focus that excluded many aspects of the broader sociocultural context. The findings suggest that hospitals should use proactive strategies with reactive investigations and that is important to think about a wider range of perspectives than those presented in the coronial investigation report.

KeywordsCritical Discourse Analysis, Patient Safety, Coronial investigation, Coroners court, Health care, critical incident, human factors, harm in health care
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020420317. Patient safety
Public Notes

File reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher/author.

Byline AffiliationsSchool of Nursing and Midwifery
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