Nursing is one of the most important professions in healthcare, and it plays a vital role in delivering positive patient outcomes. Although there are many aspects involved in working as a nurse, the ability to operate as part of a team is critical.
Good teamwork skills are useful because they allow you to work with other nurses in your unit and offer the best care to patients. This ability to collaborate effectively as a nurse is not just limited to other nursing colleagues. Professionals in this role regularly collaborate with other healthcare workers to offer enhanced patient care.
How can you learn the skills to do this, and how do nurses collaborate with other healthcare professionals?
Building collaboration and teamwork skills
Effective teamwork across healthcare is vital for not only delivering the best care but also ensuring care is fully coordinated. That said, healthcare professionals like nurses should develop excellent collaboration and teamwork skills to provide the best services to patients.
Teamwork skills refer to abilities and qualities that enable individuals to work well with others during collaborations and projects. When nurses know how to work with others, they can accomplish their goals and contribute to the organization they’re working for.
One way to build teamwork skills when looking to enter nursing is through academic study. The best degree courses in nursing will teach you how to collaborate with a range of healthcare professionals to offer comprehensive patient care.
If you wish to teach the next generation of nurses essential skills like this, training to become a nurse educator is a rewarding career path. The MSN-NE online course from the University of Indianapolis is a popular choice in this area and worth considering if you have experience in healthcare and knowledge that you are eager to pass on to others in the field.
How do nurses work with other healthcare professionals?
Whether they are admitted with brain tumor symptoms or a broken leg, most patients will encounter a variety of healthcare professionals in any hospital or clinic. This means that the nurses who look after them typically need to work with a range of other healthcare staff to ensure coordinated treatment.
Nurses, for example, may work with physicians to ensure they have the latest information for patient rounds, know about any updates to care plans made by other healthcare professionals, or pass on any developments in a patient’s condition.
They may also work with therapists to inform them of any changes made to a patient’s care plan by physicians or pass on information patients have divulged about their emotional state or mood.
Indeed, nurses must work with dedicated health care professionals to provide the best services they can to the patients and their families. Since the healthcare industry demands the attention of several medical specialties, they must learn different knowledge and skill sets from other medical practitioners to adapt quickly and perform their responsibilities effectively.
Like other professionals, nurses are essential in the healthcare industry since they spend most of their time with the patients, making them more understanding and empathetic about their surroundings. If they can work with physicians, dieticians, therapists, and many more, the healthcare facility can provide coordinated care and treatment, vital in improving a patient’s quality of life.
Social workers and nurses often collaborate
It is also common for nurses to have close working relationships with healthcare social workers. This might entail letting social workers know about a patient they feel is vulnerable or is showing signs of abuse in the home.
A collaborative approach to patient care considers all of the factors related to an individual’s health that might need addressing. Nurses also collaborate with porters to ensure patients are brought where they need to be in the hospital on time and are not left hanging around.
Coordinated patient care can even include nurses working with cleaning staff in their unit. This might involve arranging cleaning at times that do not disturb patients or ensuring cleaning is done to a high standard to offer the best care overall.
Although this is not an exhaustive list of every healthcare professional a nurse may collaborate with, it does provide some good examples of how it occurs.
Why is coordinated patient care so important?
By far, the most important reason coordinated care is so essential is the positive impact it has on the quality of care people receive. Facilitating a collaborative approach means nurses ensure patients get the best outcomes. It also means they can keep anyone who treats the patient up to date with any new developments and the latest data on their condition.
Working with other healthcare professionals involved in a patient’s treatment also means nurses have the latest information to work with and know about any changes to care plans. Coordinated patient care also has a positive impact on the general experience of patients in a healthcare setting. This can greatly influence how they feel about their stay and their overall view on the hospital or clinic in question.
On the other hand, coordinated patient care is also crucial in improving care transitions. This is especially true with patients with high-risk comorbidities and other severe medical conditions requiring multiple shifts throughout their care. From a change in a medical facility or healthcare provider to transitioning to home care, care coordination can streamline the whole process. Since it involves proper documentation, healthcare professionals can enhance the patient’s care transition.
The last major reason to practice coordinated patient care is because it helps to avoid overlap and enables healthcare settings to run more efficiently. This is because every member of the team involved in looking after a patient knows when key tasks have been completed. This can avoid any doubling up on work and cuts back on wasted time.
Collaboration makes for better patient outcomes
Inter-professional collaboration is something every nurse should pay close attention to because the coordinated approach it fosters can provide a better patient experience and improved care. When you also factor in the greater efficiency that coordinated treatment promotes and the close bonds it creates among healthcare workers in any setting, its benefits are clear.