Providing the best hospital experience for patients requires coordination and communication between all providers involved in a patient’s care. This cooperative approach is referred to as interprofessional collaboration, and its goal is to help doctors and nurses work together to administer the highest quality care. Interprofessional collaboration fosters trust and respect between all healthcare providers and encourages the practice of treating nurses as equals with physicians.
In this post, we’ll discuss how nurses can collaborate across disciplines to ensure each healthcare professional’s expertise and experience are applied in the most effective way possible.
Encourage Participation in Other Departments’ Training
While every healthcare professional attends training sessions specific to their discipline, nurses should make an effort to sit in on other departments’ classes so they can have more insight into other roles at the hospital. This can also help nurses better empathize with the challenges their colleagues in other disciplines face, which can strengthen bonds between providers. Being able to assess a situation with multiple viewpoints allows nurses to make better care decisions.
Promote Multidisciplinary Rounds
Multidisciplinary rounds offer a simple way to improve communication between departments. Nurses should encourage their staff to take advantage of these opportunities to ask questions, get clarification and discuss patient goals with other providers. Multidisciplinary rounds are a perfect example of interprofessional collaboration as they allow every team member to hold discussions and share crucial information about each patient’s plan of care. They ensure each provider is on the same page regarding what is best for the patient.
Keep the Focus on the Patient
Traditionally, there has been a hospital hierarchy with physicians at the top and nurses on a lower tier. Therefore, it can be difficult to institute a paradigm shift where nurses are on the same level as doctors, particularly with clinicians who have been practicing for many years. However, a physician’s main priority is giving their patients the best quality care and interprofessional collaboration facilitates this. If you meet resistance when introducing interprofessional collaboration, remind providers that the goal of the approach is to ensure patient satisfaction and a positive hospital experience.
When carried out correctly, interprofessional collaboration can lead to better outcomes and improved patient safety. The approach allows nurses to take advantage of not only their own skills and experience but also the expertise of every healthcare provider. Since nurses usually spend the most time with patients, they can share what they’ve learned with doctors and develop the best plan of care for each individual patient. When nurses and doctors work together as equals, it becomes easier to create a connected, supportive hospital environment.
Looking for even more ways to improve the hospital experience? Download the free checklist, The Ultimate Patient Satisfaction Checklist for Nurse Managers, to ensure your nurses are providing the best experience for patients.