How Does Interprofessional Collaboration Enhance Patient Care in Nursing?

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    Nurse Magazine

    How Does Interprofessional Collaboration Enhance Patient Care in Nursing?

    In the quest to deliver exemplary patient care, we've gathered insights from five nursing professionals on the impact of interprofessional collaboration. Featuring perspectives from a Nurse Educator to a Director of Behavioral Health Services, our experts delve into how diverse expertise and cohesive integration can significantly enhance patient outcomes.

    • Enhance Care with Diverse Expertise
    • Cohesive Integration for Optimal Outcomes
    • Demonstrate Teamwork with Patient Involvement
    • Improve Distance Treatment with Communication
    • Facilitate Relationships with Diverse Training

    Enhance Care with Diverse Expertise

    Interprofessional collaboration is absolutely essential to enhance patient care. As a nurse, communicating and working with other professions is not only a great responsibility but an excellent privilege as well. Oftentimes, the respiratory therapist and I have to work with a patient to get them off (or discontinue) the use of a ventilator. We have to discuss the patient's medications, ventilator settings, and advocate to the doctor together what we think the patient's needs are and how they can change.

    The collaboration we experience together brings in both of our expertise, and we often "catch" something the other one might miss. Whether it's with therapy, a nurse assistant, doctor, or imaging tech, when interprofessional collaboration goes well, the patient is ultimately the one to benefit.

    Michael Hasebroock
    Michael HasebroockNurse Educator, Joyce University

    Cohesive Integration for Optimal Outcomes

    Interprofessional collaboration entails cohesive integration within a patient's network, resulting in multidimensional opportunities. For example, a newly diagnosed diabetic individual is sent from their medical home (PCP) to the hospital for dangerously high glucose and foreboding signs of DKA.

    Upon admission, a case manager collaborates with the medical team, endocrinologist, diabetic educator, pharmacist, and insurance case manager. Upon discharge for handoff and continuity of care, a conclusive report will be provided. This cohesive process ensures the most optimal outcomes.

    Brooke Edell
    Brooke EdellPediatric Nurse Case Manager

    Demonstrate Teamwork with Patient Involvement

    It requires a bit of finagling (hospital rooms are tight, and schedules often clash), but I truly believe that effective interpersonal collaboration happens in front of the patient. You can explain how the healthcare team works together to achieve excellent care, but seeing professionals together really drives home the point that a holistic approach is the best way forward.

    That's why, whenever possible, I like to get the nursing staff in the patient's room alongside the surgeon or physician. In fact, I like to cram as many team members in at the same time as possible—respiratory or physiotherapists, nutritionists, CNAs—the more the merrier, as far as I'm concerned.

    When collaboration only occurs behind the scenes, the patient doesn't have a chance to voice issues that often span specialties. They're less likely to understand how one facet, like medication or diet, impacts outcomes more broadly. Seeing multiple team members interplay reminds them of the complexity involved, and gives them an incentive to comply with each recommendation.

    Carlos da Silva
    Carlos da SilvaPhysician Assistant, PA Career Hub

    Improve Distance Treatment with Communication

    In almost any patient care setting, it's imperative that nurses and dermatologists communicate both with clinical descriptions and photos of the dermatological problem – whether it be chronic ulcer care, skin lesions suspicious for malignancy, or a true dermatologic emergency like erythrodermic psoriasis or Stevens-Johnson syndrome.

    By communicating easily through various platforms, we can accurately treat patients at a distance when nurses and specialists have excellent communication. It saves time and lives.

    David ColbertFounder and head physician of New York Dermatology Group. Developer of the Colbert MD skincare line., New York Dermatology Group

    Facilitate Relationships with Diverse Training

    In my opinion, nurses receive a wide range of training in a variety of areas to specifically facilitate interprofessional relationships. As a result, they create therapeutic environments for the client by collecting data that will be vital for the medical team, clinical staff, nutritionist, case management, laboratory, pharmacy, etc., thereby keeping the team on the same page.

    R. Dave Jones, RN
    R. Dave Jones, RNDirector of Behavioral Health Services, Milton Recovery