High-performance teams for current and future physician leaders: an introduction.J Surg Educ. 2008 Mar-Apr; 65(2):145-50.JS
The scope of patient management increasingly crosses the defined lines of multiple medical specialties and services to meet patient needs. Concurrently, many hospitals and health-care systems have adapted new multidisciplinary team structures that provide patient-centric care as opposed to the more traditional discipline-centered delivery of care. As health care continues to evolve, the use of teams becomes even more critical in allowing interdependence between multiple disciplines to provide excellent care delivery and ongoing patient management. The use of teams permeates the health-care industry (and has done so for many years), but confusion about the structure, role, and use of teams contributes to limited effectiveness. The health-care industry's underuse of the fundamentals of corporate teamwork has, in part, created ineffective team leadership at the physician level. As the first in a series of documents on teamwork, this article is intended to introduce the reader to the rudiments of team theory and to present an introduction to a model of teamwork. The role of current and future physician leaders in ensuring team effectiveness is emphasized in this discussion. By educating health-care professionals on the foundations of high-performance teamwork, we hope to accomplish two main goals. The first goal is to help create a common and systematic taxonomy that physician leaders and institutional management can agree on and refer to concerning the development of high-performance health-care teams. The second goal is to stimulate the development of future physician leaders who use proven teamwork principles as a powerful modality to achieve efficient and optimal patient care. Most importantly, we wish to emphasize that health care, both philosophically and practically, is delivered best through high-performance teams. For such teams to perform properly, the organizational environment must support the team concept tangibly. In concert, we believe the best manner in which to cultivate knowledge and performance of the health-care organizational mission and goals is by using such teams.