The administration of quality healthcare for patients in hospitals is not that easy and calls for coordinated efforts by various health professionals, physicians, and other allied health service providers. Research conducted by the Association of American Medical Colleges estimates a scarcity of 45,000 primary care doctors and 46,000 surgeons and medical specialists by 2020 due to the growing numbers of the aging population and people suffering from chronic diseases. As a result, hospitals are struggling to provide quality health care and experiencing operational impacts like congestion in the emergency unit.Managers on their part display frustration and argue that shortage in the workforce leads to low staff morale.
Moreover, another survey done by AMN Healthcare on clinical workforce shows a high percentage of administrators are extremely concerned about the clinical staffing issues such as clinical staffing costs, staff vacancies and staffing costs and the healthcares capacity to handle new patients. Different studies have shown that healthcare worker satisfaction has a direct impact on patient satisfaction. The relationship between patients and health-care practitioners must be reinforced to reduce the communication gap between them. The professionals working hours and more significantly his or her accessibility to the patient has a direct help on the overall situation of the patient.
Traditionally health care has not always been regarded as a team sport. However, during the early years in a community setting, patients were catered for by one all-knowing health practitioner, who resided in the town and visited the home of the patient to treat him or her and any other assistance in the form of nursing care was provided by a family member. (Mitchell et al. 2012). Although this displayed some concepts of teamwork, the evolution of health care has witnessed drastic change ever since. With the modernization of health care, health practitioners have no reason to be lone rangers but need to join and cooperate with other members of the staff.
A health team operating in solitude is now viewed as unattractive, a lone ranger, somebody whose reliance on only resources may put the patient at risk. Moreover, with the complexity of the modern health care, teamwork and effective communication are essential. Members of the team have to come from different backgrounds, each with unique behaviors knowledge and expertise. For this purpose, it is fundamental that each team member develops a good understanding and respect for one another. However as the responsibilities on the team differ by both professional skills as well as functions, patients and family must be entirely conversant about the roles of each staff. An example of this is during the daily rounds at Cincinnati childrens hospital, all team members give a brief introduction of themselves to each patient and caregiver by name and briefly describe their role in the patients treatment (Mitchell et al. 2012).
Excellent team-building is practiced when all members understand and believe and work towards the shared purpose of caring and working for a patient. All team members cooperate in the different stages of development with each member capitalizing on their strength. A good teaming strategy elaborates how people will perform their roles towards a common objective. The next fundamental step towards providing high-quality healthcare services is by incorporating the patient into the health care team and making sure that they actively participate. It has been found that patients who are deeply involved in their treatment have better results and make decisions that are profitable. Sharing of information is vital in good teaming, and all members need to be acutely aware of that this includes both technical and affective information. However, the reality paints a different picture in that patients are mostly not well prepared to contribute to the team, and the health-care team are also not well equipped and lack good communication skills to interact with the patients. High-quality team based health care is also often very expensive to implement.
Various techniques have been used to foster inclusion ad improve communication and collaboration between patients and their practitioners.An example used is the patient-centered approach where the patient is the most important. This complements the old saying Salus Populi Suprema Lex est that is let the welfare of the people be the supreme law.To implement patient-centered, critical obstacles health-care workers and patients which are communication skills and cultural competence of the treating clinician.( Bhutani, J. Bhutani, S. & Kumar, J. 2013).
Cultural competition is another essential need of proper patient-centered treatment. Health care practitioners experience linguistic and cultural obstacles between themselves and patients which interfere with the efficient delivery of health services. Moreover in a diverse country like the USA, with its different cultures and religions, it has proved to be quite difficult for health specialists to be culturally competent.However, the time has come whereby we as health practitioners need to evaluate ourselves and think beyond evidence-based treatment plans and concentrate on the needs of our patients. (Bhutani, J. Bhutani, S. & Kumar, J. 2013).
In another technique, researchers have outlined a roadmap to identify way out to close the gap in caregiving.It states that to reduce ethnic and racial disparities, organizations and providers ought to be responsible for decreasing disparities and create a general infrastructure and culture to improve quality. Moreover engaging family and community members in the treatment process may improve the outcome of minority patients. (Chin et al.,
Bhutani, J., Bhutani, S. & Kumar, J. (2013). Achieving Patient-Centered Care: Communication and cultural competence
China, N, H., Clarke, R., Norcon RS, Casey AA, Godd, AP, Keesecker NM, & Cook SC. (2012). A Roadmap and Best Practices for Organizations to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Disparities in HealthCare. Journal of General Internal Medicine.
Mitchell, P., Wynia, M., Golden R, McNelliS, P., Okun, S., Webb C. E, Rohrbach V, & Kohorn (2012). Core Principles & Values of Effective Team-Based Health Care. Institute Of Medicine
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