Team effectiveness in academic primary health care teams
Primary health care is undergoing significant organizational change, including the development of interdisciplinary health care teams. Understanding how teams function effectively in primary care will assist training programs in teaching effective interprofessional practices. This study aimed to explore the views of members of primary health care teams regarding what constitutes a team, team effectiveness and the factors that affect team effectiveness in primary care. Focus group consultations from six teams in the Department of Family Medicine at Queen's University were recorded and transcribed and qualitative analysis was used to identify themes. Twelve themes were identified that related to the impact of dual goals/obligations of education and clinical/patient practice on team relationships and learners; the challenges of determining team membership including nonattendance of allied health professionals except nurses; and facilitators and barriers to effective team function. This study provides insight into some of the challenges of developing effective primary care teams in an academic department of family medicine. Clear goals and attention to teamwork at all levels of collaboration is needed if effective interprofessional education is to be achieved. Future research should clarify how best to support the changes required for increasingly effective teamwork.
PubMed URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19012140