Teamwork in Healthcare

Healthcare institutions that promote effective teamwork can enhance the quality of patient care, improve patient’s safety, and minimize workload issues that usually lead to burnout among professionals in the healthcare. For teams to work effectively, they must good communication, clear purpose, procedures and protocols, coordination, and an effective mechanism or system for resolving conflicts. The active participation of all members of a team is another essential feature. Teams that are successful recognize the personal and professional contributions of all team members; they promote team interdependence and individual development, recognize accountability as a collective or team responsibility, and know the benefits of working together. In order to enhance teamwork in a hospital, every worker, regardless of function or level, must be assigned to a specific team that has a shared responsibility for enhancing their function or work area.

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In order to enhance communication, teams need to utilize closed looped communications. According to this model, every verbal communication is addressed to a particular individual by name; this helps in bringing clarity to each team member responsibilities. In managing teams, hospitals have to establish a chain of command i.e. every team leader being accountable for his team and answerable to the human resource manager.

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