Collaborative Working

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Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care (Primary Care)

Module Title: Collaborative Working

Module reference NFD_5_100

Student Number: 3230373

Module Lead: Audley Graham

Submission Date: 07 January 2015

Collaborative Working

There are many different ways to define ‘Collaborative Working’. According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information bookshelf (NCIB) Collaboration in health care is defined as health care professionals assuming complementary roles and co-operatively working together, sharing responsibility for problem-solving and making decisions to formulate and carry out plans for patient care. Collaboration between physicians, nurses, and other health care professionals increases a team member’s awareness of each other’s type of knowledge and skills, leading to continued improvement in decision-making.

To work collaboratively it is also important for all team members to be willing to take part and trust other health professionals to accomplish a collective outcome, which is the health and wellbeing of the patient. Thomas et al (2005) mentions that willingness is one step of developing interpersonal collaboration and trust has been seen as a vital part to assist the development of effective team working. All professionals need to trust each other and learn new competencies and be able to take on new roles without resentment, as this requires a willing and trusting approach. Therefore, to give the patient the best possible care, it is imperative to work in conjunction with other healthcare professionals to meet the needs of the patient. Each professional has to show mutual respect for one another in order to be able to work together or else there will be conflict in the team and the outcome of the patient will suffer. Thomas et al (2005) continues to say that confidence has been pointed out as an important feature in collaborative working as professionals who are confident in their own roles have the ability to work flexibly into other boundaries without feeling jealous or threatened. Confidence shows leadership and allows others to trust the work of that individual, therefore creating a trusting environment for them all to work together.

The terms interprofessional, multiprofessional and interdisciplinary are all related to collaborative working, Thomas et al. (2005) defines the prefix ‘multi ‘ as the participation of staff from different professions, and the prefix ‘inter” means collaboration in the areas of decision making thus indicating that healthcare professionals, be it consultant, nurses, social workers or community staff work together to provide a high quality care and to achieve the best outcome for the patient. With skills and knowledge coming from these colleagues that major in different backgrounds, overall the team can provide an excellent service and duty to patients due to having specialists from different areas working together in the same team. Collaborative working involves interaction of various groups or professions to accomplish a general goal, which normally in the health care setting is the care of the patient. As a result of problem solving, an open and flexible approach to the roles and tasks of individual team members provide a more patient focused healthcare.

The aim of this essay is to establish what skills and knowledge are required to work collaboratively successfully. I will describe a care pathway, which will look at the care a patient received from different services in which I participated.

In the health care service, working with people is a part of the working day. According to Goodman & Clemow (2010), working with other people is a fact of everyday life, whether you will be working the in community or in a hospital environment you will be constantly interacting with people to assess, plan implement and evaluate care provided. Goodman and Clemow (2010) go on to say Nursing work is...
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