A four year, systems-wide intervention promoting interprofessional collaboration

Braithwaite, Jeffrey and Westbrook, Mary and Nugus, Peter and Greenfield, David and Travaglia, Joanne and Runciman, William and Foxwell, A. Ruth and Boyce, Rosalie A. and Devinney, Timothy and Westbrook, Johanna (2012) A four year, systems-wide intervention promoting interprofessional collaboration. BMC Health Services Research, 12 (1). pp. 99-106.

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Abstract

Background: A four-year action research study was conducted across the Australian Capital Territory health system to strengthen interprofessional collaboration (IPC) through multiple intervention activities. Methods: We developed 272 substantial IPC intervention activities involving 2,407 face-to-face encounters with health system personnel. Staff attitudes toward IPC were surveyed yearly using Heinemann et al’s Attitudes toward Health Care Teams and Parsell and Bligh’s Readiness for Interprofessional Learning scales (RIPLS). At study’s end staff assessed whether project goals were achieved. Results: Of the improvement projects, 76 exhibited progress, and 57 made considerable gains in IPC. Educational workshops and feedback sessions were well received and stimulated interprofessional activities. Over time staff scores on Heinemann’s Quality of Interprofessional Care subscale did not change significantly and scores on the Doctor Centrality subscale increased, contrary to predictions. Scores on the RIPLS subscales of Teamwork & Collaboration and Professional Identity did not alter. On average for the assessment items 33% of staff agreed that goals had been achieved, 10% disagreed, and 57% checked ‘neutral’. There was most agreement that the study had resulted in increased sharing of knowledge between professions and improved quality of patient care, and least agreement that between-professional rivalries had lessened and communication and trust between professions improved. Conclusions: Our longitudinal interventional study of IPC involving multiple activities supporting increased IPC achieved many project-specific goals, but improvements in attitudes over time were not demonstrated and neutral assessments predominated, highlighting the difficulties faced by studies targeting change at the systems level and over extended periods.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Running title: Intervention promoting interprofessional collaboration. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright on any research article in a journal published by BioMed Central is retained by the author(s). Authors grant BioMed Central a license to publish the article and identify itself as the original publisher. Authors also grant any third party the right to use the article freely as long as its integrity is maintained and its original authors, citation details and publisher are identified. The BioMed Central Copyright and License Agreement (identical to the Creative Commons Attribution License) formalizes these and other terms and conditions of publishing research articles.
Depositing User: Ms Annette Nanka
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Biological and Physical Sciences
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2012 08:03
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2014 06:06
Uncontrolled Keywords: systems research; action research; intervention; change; interprofessionalism; survey; longitudinal research; attitudinal improvement; collaboration; socio-ecological theory
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130108 Technical, Further and Workplace Education
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2001 Communication and Media Studies > 200105 Organisational, Interpersonal and Intercultural Communication
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111709 Health Care Administration
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9305 Education and Training Systems > 930501 Education and Training Systems Policies and Development
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-12-99
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/19627

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