The article reviewed in the scope of this paper is titled “Interprofessional collaboration in health care: Lessons to be learned from competitive sports.” It was written by Brennan Bosch and Holly Mansell and published in Canadian Pharmacists Journal in 2015. It is a qualitative article that analyzes the utilization of highly efficient interprofessional collaboration in various sports, such as soccer, basketball, rugby, and football, to maintain health and restoring mobility after sport-related traumas. The article reflects on five key areas necessary for effective interprofessional collaboration in sports.
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The author states that there are five essential ingredients for team success. These are as follows (Bosch & Mansell, 2015):
- Role clarity
- Trust and confidence
- Overcoming adversity
- Overcoming personal differences
- Collective leadership
These qualities are important in professional sports and interprofessional nursing teams. Sports teams typically have clear roles for its members, such as attackers, defenders, mid-fielders, and others. Healthcare teams are also supposed to have clear definitions and responsibilities (Bosch & Mansell, 2015). These include diagnosticians, prescribers, and daily care personnel.
Trust and confidence are developed in sports teams and nursing teams by practicing alongside one another and training to perform under different circumstances. Overcoming adversity for nursing teams shows in dealing with difficult situations and supply shortages (Bosch & Mansell, 2015). Working together towards a common goal and overcoming personal differences is a similar trait in professional sports and nursing teams alike.
Lastly, the author mentions collective leadership as an integral part of a nursing team. It stands for the ability to make decisions based not on a single person’s command or point of view, but objective input from all members of the interprofessional team (Bosch & Mansell, 2015). This method allows for more accurate instructions and precise actions, as anyone has the potential to take charge.
Barriers and Opportunities for Developing an Interprofessional Team
Although interdisciplinary nursing teams show impressive rates of success, there are several barriers to the introduction and implementation of these groups in modern nursing settings. The barriers that reduce the effectiveness of collaborative effort are typically found on three levels (“Common barriers,” n.d.): the organizational level, the team level, and the individual level.
The main barriers at the organizational level include financial and regulatory constraints as well as a lack of reimbursement (“Common barriers,” n.d.). The interprofessional nursing practice involves several nurses working to treat a single patient, meaning that the average costs per patient increase. The lack of support and nursing personnel effectively prohibits deployment of interprofessional teams.
At a team level, the main obstacles to effective interprofessional nursing practice are a lack of leadership, nursing apathy, and a lack of a shared purpose (“Common barriers,” n.d.). Without collective leadership, one nurse has to take on the role of a leader, which is associated with professional mistakes. Nursing apathy reduces the effectiveness of overall care. Lastly, interpersonal conflicts and territorial conflicts between nurses serve as obstacles at the individual level.
However, there are also plenty of opportunities associated with the introduction of interprofessional nursing teams. The use of several professionals to treat a patient or a condition ensures a well-rounded and high-quality standard of care. Interprofessional teams are typically used in the ICU, where the accuracy of delivery of care can save a patient’s life. Nursing teams are also used in large hospitals, in geriatric and long-term care wards.
Bosch, B., & Mansell, H. (2015). Interprofessional collaboration in healthcare: Lessons to be learned from competitive sports. Canadian pharmacists Journal, 148(4), 176-179.