Introduction: Collaboration in health institutions is working together and performing complementary roles for patient care (O’Daniel and Rosenstein, 2022). It involves sharing responsibilities in decision-making and problem-solving in formulating and carrying out care plans for the patients. This paper will discuss my experience as an interdisciplinary member in a psychiatric unit and the importance of the experience.
It was my second week in the psychiatric unit. We admitted a schizophrenic patient with known diabetes mellitus type 2. The patient was so violent on one occasion, he was pushed by another patient to the door frame and got a closed fracture. Furthermore, the patient was severely malnourished to the extent that he could not tolerate solid meals. As a new psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, I was responsible for admitting and making a care plan for the patient.
I had to call the nurse manager and ask for a medical officer, laboratory technician, nutrition officer, orthopedic surgeon, and an experienced psychiatrist for this case. The lab technician took the patient’s blood sample to measure blood sugar levels. After determining the blood sugar levels, the medical officer interpreted the results to determine the patient prognosis for diabetes mellitus and gave instructions on dosage administration techniques for metformin and insulin. On the other side, the orthopedic surgeon planned for surgery and subsequent management of the fracture. The psychiatrist confirmed the patient has schizophrenia, where he put him on antipsychotic and supportive therapies, for example, cognitive therapy, support group, and behavioral therapy.
Importance of Team Collaboration in Health Care
With collaboration in the health care system, health care providers work together as a unit to provide care for the patient. They make plans and solve health problems together; each health care department gives input; for example, the medical doctor will depend on laboratory and imaging results to confirm the medical diagnosis. The practice improves patient care and outcomes (Connor, 2022).
Studies have shown reduced medical errors in health facilities that emphasize collaboration among health members (Beth et al., 2022). The gaps in health care systems, for example, misdiagnosis, missed symptoms and medication errors, can be easily addressed and avoided when there is interprofessional collaboration. Nurses can confirm medical instructions from medical officers, and medical officers can confirm and ascertain laboratory findings from laboratory technicians reducing possible medical errors.
Health care providers come from different backgrounds with different cultures. Interprofessional collaboration acknowledges each team member’s role, strengthening staff relationships and improving job satisfaction (Connor, 2022). Additionally, collaboration in health care settings enables health care providers to avoid errors and costs that can be incurred by either the hospital or patients hence reducing inefficiencies and healthcare expenses (Connor, 2022).
In health care, health workers depend on each other. The interlinking of departments requiring timely and appropriate communication is strengthened by collaboration among health workers. Good communication and collaboration start treatment faster and save time and resources for both patients and health care providers.
Through the experience, I learned that there are multiple departments providing services for patient care in the health care system. There is a need for collaboration among health worker teams to provide quality care, improve patient outcomes, and avoid medical errors.
Beth, L., Sharrie, M., Martha, G., & David, H. (2022). Integrating Compassionate, Collaborative Care (the “Triple …: Ingenta Connect. Ingentaconnect.com. Retrieved 28 January 2022, from https://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/wk/acm/2016/00000091/00000003/art00019.
Connor, W. (2022). 5 Benefits of Interprofessional Collaboration in Healthcare. TigerConnect. Retrieved 28 January 2022, from https://tigerconnect.com/blog/5-benefits-of-interprofessional-collaboration-in-healthcare/.
O’Daniel, M., & Rosenstein, A. (2022). Professional Communication and Team Collaboration. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved 28 January 2022, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK2637/#:~:text=Collaboration%20in%20health%20care%20is,out%20plans%20for%20patient%20care.&text=Effective%20teams%20are%20characterized%20by%20trust%2C%20respect%2C%20and%20collaboration.
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