Referring to the doctors in training, cooperation, as well as the exchange of opinions on a particular patient issue, are considered necessary.
Not only because of the orders of their residents or because it is something good to do for their training.
Cooperation and participation of different specialties for the treatment of a pathology, increases the chances for a better outcome of a patient, but also the improvement of health care.
Gathering important information
The increasing complexity of the diseases, the continuous changes in medication and the remote monitoring of patients, are events that highlight the need to collect information from all specialties of health professionals involved in the care of a patient.
All those involved in the care of a patient can give extremely important information. A key requirement is that they feel safe and comfortable communicating – even if the news is bad.
However, many health professionals, of different specialties, do not make the decision to communicate with each other, as they either consider that their observations may not be important, or they do not believe that they have a responsibility beyond the specific task set by their specialty.
Some of them believe that they will be ignored. Others are just afraid. But why does this happen when the goal is common?
Hierarchies, the duration of the career path, specialties, as well as gender, race, age, etc., are elements that prevent clinicians and staff from communicating to each other.
Many remain silent, as they do not want to risk going outside the scope defined by their specialty and competence. But why? How will they be able to get useful information about their patients when they don’t feel motivated to work together?
The goal is common
Working together with a common goal makes you better together. Every idea, point of view, information is important! And also important in the treatment and optimization of patient outcomes.
Faced with a difficult or complex pathology, it is logical that a doctor on his own cannot predict everything. To offer quality care, all those dealing with a patient should have close communication, especially when the patient is under a serious condition or is being treated with a high side-effect risk therapy.
Upgrading care in this case will not only concern the results of the treatment. Patients will also feel valued, that they are receiving attention but also much more secure.
The basics of a real cooperation
The two basic elements of cooperation and joint participation in the care of a patient, are safety and a sense of self-confidence. Every comment, remark, point of view, is important!
Safety (psychological) means that everyone feels comfortable talking and openly expressing their point of view, actively participating in the care of the patient. Especially when it involves complex problems or difficult situations.
When there is psychological security, people are confident that they will be heard, and their opinion will be treated with respect and justice.
Having psychological security, a person can overcome problems such as racisms, sexism, or other behaviors of exclusion from the others.
He overcomes the discomfort and anxiety of having his opinion rejected, as he believes that everyone together can have a productive discussion to solve a problem.
Prejudice and exclusion deeply harm people. For some, it takes courage to simply show up at work. It is a fact that the fear of devaluation or ignorance prevents people from being open.
For people to feel safe:
– It is necessary to eliminate behaviors such as injustice, racism, sexism, and prejudice, which are based on immutable characteristics, hindering evolution and healthy communication.
– They should be confident that they will be heard. They should feel that their opinion can contribute significantly to the improvement of care.
– In a group everyone should trust everyone, giving importance and value to each point of view.
With the promotion of cooperation, the contribution, and the benefit of the exchange of views become obvious to everyone. This requires constructive communication, especially when opinions are different.
Cooperation does not define anyone less important or unworthy of providing proper care! It allows everyone to feel valued so that they can be themselves.
The fact of complexity and increasing uncertainty regarding a pathology, make diversity in specialty, experience as well as collecting different opinions and comments, improve decisions and outcomes.
Without it, fears and bad feelings from entrenched prejudices and disrespect create problems, trafficking in the credibility of care and introducing undesirable elements that even threaten security.
Every member of the care team, is important
All specialties, who support a patient during a hospitalization for example (nurses, assistants, physiotherapists…), they can give useful information, as they observe, know, listen to the patient.
The medical team will evaluate and make decisions based on data, tests, and numbers. Therefore, it is likely to omit elements concerning the clinical picture, behavior of the patient and which are extremely useful.
These elements may have been observed by a nurse, due to the daily contact and proximity with the patient. So how important is it for the nurse to voice their opinion/concern about something?
It should be highlighted that every member of the care team is important. Especially in cases where health care is complex. To feel the comfort and security that they will not be underestimated, all members of a group should communicate honestly as well as feel safe.
One tip: Strengthen collaboration in the future! Contact each person in the care team, even just to ask what’s new. Create a more personal relationship with them. Consider their point of view.
With this tactic, you will build a real and creative collaboration.
You will also release the energy and devotion of people. Conditions will be created for everyone to become more motivated, as they will know that they are important.
There will be more generosity, but also commitment from the team. Imagine the benefit for your patients!
True collaboration will make a difference, improving the care of your patients, which also enables you to be the best doctor you can be…