Teamwork is the Heart of Health Care
Quality health care is a team effort. But what makes a great team? According to a definition used by the World Health Organization, highly effective health care teams share certain characteristics. Such teams comprise members who do the following:
- Possess specialized and complementary knowledge and skills
- Know their role and the roles of others in the team(s) and interact with one another to achieve a common goal
- Act as a collective unit, as a result of the interdependency of the tasks performed by team members
For example, a patient with heart failure may have an extended health team with multiple healthcare professionals working together to prevent a heart attack. The team may look something like this:
- A Primary Care Physician is usually the first doctor a patient sees for their symptoms or a wellness check. They examine and treat patients with a wide range of conditions and refer those with serious ailments to a specialistor appropriate facility.
- The Cardiologist is a physician who specializes in taking care of the heart and blood vessels. This specialist examines patients to identify symptoms of heart disease using a variety of tests.
- Physician assistants, nurse practitioners and registered nurses assist the cardiologist. It is their responsibility to manage the patient’s care and comfort at each stage of the procedure – from preparation to recovery.
- Pharmacists are a primary source of advice regarding the safe, appropriate, and cost-effective use of medications.
- Caregivers are family members, friends, or personal care assistants who help with physical activities, transportation, medication management, and provide emotional support.
- The Patient is the most important member of the healthcare team. It is the patient’s job to keep their health team aware of symptoms and changes in their condition. The patient is also expected to be an active participant and decision-maker regarding their care. The team should help empower the patient to feel a sense of control over their condition and capable of maintaining their health.
The better the members of a healthcare team are able to work together, the better they are able to provide the best quality patient care possible. According to recent Press Ganey research, patients who perceive that their care team is working together to meet their needs rate their experience of care higher than those who don’t. And, according to data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, providers who feel they are part of a highly effective care team are more engaged in and experience more reward from their work.
That’s why at Envera Health, we see ourselves as an extension of the healthcare team. As an Engagement Services Organization, we partner with health systems to unify the care team and improve the customer experience. By utilizing an advanced engagement center and embracing a unique 360 degree view of the customer, we provide patients and providers with the resources needed to remain active members of the healthcare team.
Think we could be a valuable member on your team? Let us know!