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Reflections on interprofessional team-based clinical care in the ebola epidemic: The Nebraska Medicine experience

Published:December 02, 2014DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.outlook.2014.11.019
      Team-based interprofessional care has become the gold standard for comprehensive and efficient health care. Multiple national standard-setting bodies recommend interprofessional team-based care during educational preparation (e.g.,

      American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2006). Essentials of clinical doctoral education. Washington, DC.: Author.

      ,

      American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2008). Essentials of baccalaureate education in nursing. Washington, DC.: Author

      ,

      American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2011). Essentials of master’s education in nursing. Washington, DC. Author.

      ,

      Liaison Committee on Medical Education. (2014). Functions and structure of a medical school: Standards for accreditation of medical education programs leading to the M.D. degree. Washington, DC: Author.

      ,

      Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. (2006). Accreditation standards and guidelines for the professional program in pharmacy leading to the doctor of pharmacy degree. Chicago, Ill: Author.

      ,
      Interprofessional Education Collaborative Expert Panel
      Core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice: Report of an expert panel.
      ). Interprofessional team-based care has been recommended as part of routine clinical care (
      • Salas E.
      • Rosen M.A.
      Building high reliability teams: Progress and some reflections on teamwork training.
      ). Team-based care has been found to enhance a culture of patient safety (
      • Jones K.J.
      • Skinner A.M.
      • High R.
      • Reiter-Palmon R.
      A theory-driven, longitudinal evaluation of the impact of team training on safety culture in 24 hospitals.
      ). Not only is team-based care considered foundational to quality in routine care, but it also has been shown to be effective in high-reliability situations in which the risks are high and many unknowns exist but outcomes remain good (
      • McKeon L.M.
      • Oswaks J.D.
      • Cunningham P.D.
      Complexity science, high reliability organizations, and implications for team training in healthcare.
      ). The Nebraska Medicine experience in launching and operationalizing a biocontainment unit and more recently in treating people diagnosed with Ebola has demonstrated the effectiveness of a high-functioning team within a high-risk and high-pressure situation. The purpose of this article is to share reflections about the team component of this work, emphasizing five key characteristics of teamwork: training persistence, a wide range of clinical expertise, joint problem solving and creativity, a commitment to learning, and courage. Two of the authors are members of the team (Schwedhelm and Beam) and two are in leadership positions in the organizational entities in Nebraska Medicine (Morris and Sebastian). These reflections include both sets of perspectives.
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      References

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