Interprofessional experiences of recent healthcare graduates: A social psychology perspective on the barriers to effective communication, teamwork, and patient-centred care.

Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
Journal of Interprofessional Care, 2015, 29 (6), pp. 634 - 640
Issue Date:
2015
Full metadata record
Achieving safe, quality health care is highly dependent on effective communication between all members of the healthcare team. This study explored the attitudes and experiences of recent healthcare graduates regarding interprofessional teamwork and communication within a clinical setting. A total of 68 pharmacy, nursing, and medicine graduates participated in 12 semi-structured focus group discussions in clinical workplaces across three Australian states. Discussion focussed on graduates' experiences of interprofessional education and its impact on their capacity for interprofessional teamwork and communication. The Social Identity and Realistic Conflict theories were used as a framework for qualitative data analysis. A consistent pattern of profession-focussed, rather than patient- or team-focussed goals was revealed along with reports of negative stereotyping, hierarchical communication, and competition for time with the patient. Graduates acknowledged the importance of communication, teamwork, and patient-centred care and felt a better understanding of the roles of other health professionals would assist them to work together for patients' wellbeing. Identifying workplace identities and differential goals has uncovered possible motivations underlying health professionals' behaviour. These insights may help improve interprofessional collaboration by focusing attention on common team goals, increasing feelings of worth and being valued among different professionals, and decreasing the need for competition.
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