Education Management Solutions (EMS) says the National Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education has established that high-functioning teams can improve the outcomes, experience and costs of healthcare. And a recent report by the Institute of Medicine also outlines the "positive impact that interprofessional collaboration and teamwork can have on key dimensions of organizational performance."*

Improving Patient Outcomes

Interprofessional care allows clinicians to share knowledge and work toward a common goal: improved patient outcomes. Interprofessional education encourages each professional to learn the ins and outs of their teammates' roles and responsibilities, making them better able to provide patient-centered care—a new gold standard described by the Institute of Medicine as treatment that is "respectful of and responsive to individual patient preferences, needs and values, and ensuring that patient values guide all clinical decisions."

Enhancing Patient Experience

Patient experience is linked to the satisfaction patients have with their healthcare treatment plan, including their ability to book timely appointments, have easy access to information and maintain good communication with healthcare providers. Patient experience also covers the range of interactions patients have within the healthcare system, from their care by hospital staff and clinicians in doctors' offices, to pharmacists, medical record-keepers and health insurance representatives.

In order to enhance patient experience, EMS says, all of these diverse disciplines must work as a single, high-functioning interprofessional care team. Interprofessional care improves communication and collaboration, and reduces errors.

Reducing Healthcare Costs

Interprofessional care helps close communication gaps and reduce ongoing patient care problems, including misdiagnosis, the company says. When a patient is misdiagnosed or given the wrong medications, there's a chance they'll need to be readmitted – at a high cost both to themselves and the medical facility. When practitioners increase collaboration with each other and with their patients, patients receive effective treatment the first time.

Interprofessional collaboration also helps to cut down on overlap and redundancies in healthcare. An interprofessional team may make clinical rounds together, or meet to debrief and develop patient care plans.

Interprofessional Care: A Clinical Best Practice

EMS states that medical errors continue to be a leading cause of mortality in the United States —interprofessional collaboration may be a key to curbing this statistic. When it comes to patient outcomes, quality is more than a metric: high-functioning interprofessional care teams can help people live better, more healthy lives.

Read on to see how interprofessional collaboration has a positive impact on patient outcomes, patient experience, and the cost of treatment.

Schedule a free consultation to learn how you can improve patient outcomes by implementing a simulation-based interprofessional collaboration curricula at your institution.

*Source: Institute of Medicine. Measuring the Impact of Interprofessional Education (IPE) on Collaborative Practice and Patient Outcomes: A Consensus Study. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2015.