Why You Should Collaborate With Other Healthcare Professionals
Traditionally in healthcare we have operated in silos, within our profession and within our specialty. Healthcare is lacking a focus on interprofessional collaboration.
Interprofessional collaboration puts the patient at the center of focus and allows all healthcare professionals to collaboratively provide input, be part of decision making, and improve outcomes. This includes all members of the patient’s care team – nurses, physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, occupational and physical therapists, and so on.
Interprofessional collaboration in healthcare has shown to have a multitude of benefits, such as:
Reduce medical errors. Better communication among the care team results in less medical errors!
Improve patient outcomes. Again, better communication among the care team can result in a treatment plan everyone agrees on, which can improve the patient’s health as a whole.
Provide a better patient experience. Patient’s feel they are better cared for when care team members work together, which increases their overall care experience.
Lower the costs of healthcare. Interprofessional collaboration has proven to lower costs by treating patient’s effectively the first time and lowering readmission rates.
Improve employee engagement. Other members of the patient’s care team, besides physicians are empowered to make recommendations about patient care. When employees feel empowered, they are more engaged.
This type of collaboration is not easy; there can be many obstacles to implementation. For instance, what works in one healthcare setting may not necessarily apply to another healthcare setting. A physician in a large organization may find it easier to communicate with a patient’s occupational therapist than a physician in a small clinic would.
Keep these three thoughts in mind when approaching interprofessional collaboration:
Don’t listen to no! If we listened to others tell us no on all new ventures, we would never advance in our field.
Speak up! What you do and what other people do matters.
We all have something to teach to others and we all have something to learn from others.
We can’t improve the services we provide to patients alone, we have to do it together. Two heads are better than one!
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