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How Multidisciplinary Teamwork ensures Better Healthcare Outcomes?

January 11, 2022 - by Parul Saini, Webmedy team

Multidisciplinary care is when professionals from different disciplines work together to deliver comprehensive care that addresses as many patient needs as possible. Multidisciplinary care is an integrated team approach to healthcare. In multidisciplinary care, the development of patient-centered treatment plans and delivery of care becomes a shared responsibility. The evaluation of treatment options and treatment planning is a collaborative process that involves patients and patient's families as well.

Multidisciplinary teams convey many benefits to both the patients and the health professionals working on the team. These include improved health outcomes and enhanced satisfaction for clients, more efficient use of resources, and enhanced job satisfaction for team members.

Why Multidisciplinary Teamwork is needed in Healthcare?

Clinical care has become more complex and specialized, forcing medical staff to deliver complicated health services and to quickly learn new skills. Other factors, such as aging populations with older adults living longer, and the increase of chronic diseases (diabetes, cancer, heart disease) as well as the task of managing patients suffering from multiple health problems have forced medical staff into the multidisciplinary approach.

According to a study, it is found that when healthcare professionals work together, the number of medical errors is reduced and the level of patient safety rises; additionally, teamwork has been found to diminish the work-culture issues that lead to professional burnout. One reason is that health teams that include social workers, occupational therapists, and other specialty areas help break down the hierarchy and centralized power of health organizations, giving more leverage to healthcare workers and producing a higher level of work and job satisfaction. Another factor is improved patient-centered care for the long term.

Because teamwork is centered on solid communication, patients and their families sometimes feel more at ease and report that they accept prescribed treatments and feel more satisfied with their healthcare regimens when a multidisciplinary teamwork approach is in place.

Principles of Multidisciplinary Care

  • It is a team approach where care experts, the general practitioner, and related healthcare professionals deal with not only the treatment plans and delivery of care but also the psychosocial aspects of care.
  • Regular communication with team members.
  • Access to a full range of therapeutic options, irrespective of geographical remoteness, rural or urban healthcare service.
  • The patients should be included in their care discussions and management and should receive timely and appropriate information from healthcare professionals.
  • A good approach to conflict management.
  • Constructive working relationship.
  • A positive approach to diversity and equality.

Ways Multidisciplinary Teamwork Ensures Better Healthcare Outcomes

Teamwork is important for patient care in the decentralized health system with many levels of health workers. Teams can also work together to develop health promotion for diverse communities and instill disease prevention behaviors amongst patients. Multidisciplinary teams have shown to be an effective tool to facilitate collaboration between professionals and hence improve care outcomes.

Teams offer the promise to improve clinical care because they can aggregate, modify, combine, and apply a greater amount and variety of knowledge to make decisions, solve problems, generate ideas, and execute tasks more effectively and efficiently than any individual working alone.

Advantages of Multidisciplinary Teamwork

  • Improved Patient and Team Coordination.
  • Patient access to whole care team.
  • Time-saving and streamlined workforce.
  • It allows patients to set goals for themselves.
  • Increased patient and team outcomes.

Adopting Multidisciplinary teamwork helps to create effective team-based health care. Every member of the clinical team can contribute to a stronger emphasis on interdependence by embracing teamwork as a core value. This approach has the potential to change the way we interact with each other in clinical settings and ultimately transform the health care environment. This approach to care results in greater patient satisfaction with the treatment, improved financial performance, a decrease in the average duration of hospitalization, and a significant reduction in the number of unplanned hospital readmissions.

If our healthcare system is to flourish within the needs and challenges of the pandemic, the multidisciplinary approach must be implemented widely - sooner rather than later.

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