Interprofessional relationships between clinical and medical professionals have always existed. However, laboratory collaborations have increased sharply with the increased penetration of healthtech after the pandemic struck.
This boost is a blessing, especially in a field that is as specialised and intricate as modern healthcare. That is because when different clinical and medical professionals with specialised expertise liaise with one another, there is greater access to data, technology, and knowledge. This understanding contributes to improved overall patient outcomes and greater safety.
But what exactly is interprofessional collaboration in modern healthcare? The World Health Organization defines it as the practice when “multiple health workers from different professional backgrounds work[ing] together with patients, families, carers (caregivers), and communities to deliver the highest quality of care”.
This is a step beyond what happens in a traditional hospital collaboration with data sharing and efficient communication between nurses and physicians. It requires the different care team members across the clinical, medical and patient sides to engage with the patient and with each other. The idea is to work in unison for the ultimate good of the patient.
Here’s how interprofessional collaboration facilitates improved health outcomes:
Better outcomes in patient care
When different specialised professionals collaborate at a professional level, they exchange knowledge and technical expertise. This unlocks a closer understanding of advanced medical investigations, allowing healthcare professionals to make well-rounded patient treatment decisions. The consequence is improved patient health outcomes with the right decisions at the right time.
Eliminates shortcomings of working in silos
Most healthcare professionals tend to work in silos by design. For instance, this means that traditionally, dermatologists train with other dermatologists, and radiologists work with other radiologists during their training or supervision. Unfortunately, this traditional practice is suboptimal and results in limited knowledge implementation with a curtailed overall outlook.
However, when there is collaboration across varied aspects between nurses, radiologists, and lab technicians to referring physicians, this shortcoming is overcome. The outcome is a holistic, improved, and multi-disciplinary approach to treating patients.
Elevates patient safety
Collaboration also helps to keep patients at the centre of every healthcare unit’s operational essence. At the end of the day, patients’ safety and health outcomes are paramount in any healthcare profession.
When medical and clinical professionals collaborate, the result is unified access to medical and patient data that otherwise tends to sit in silos. More importantly, the different professionals also become equipped to understand patient safety more minutely and their various roles and responsibilities to that end more comprehensively.
This extended access enables everyone involved in patient health outcomes to make better decisions and safeguard client data. Consequently, there’s a reduced probability of errors. Statistically speaking, medical errors cause 250,000 deaths each year.
Enhances the brand image
Collaborations also enhance the business reputation of entities embracing that paradigm. Strong tie-ups communicate to patients and healthcare providers that the unit is well-equipped in terms of technology and expertise.
In addition, proper safeguarding of patient and medical data enhances great trust while allowing healthcare professionals to make better treatment-related decisions.
Collaboration is the future of superior patient outcomes
In an intricate field like healthcare that deals with unique human bodies, there are bound to be gaps in understanding. One cannot possibly have scoped out exact answers to all questions at a given time. In such times, collaboration helps to get the correct answers backed by sound reasoning.
Through collaborative approaches and more seamless communication, there are fewer medical errors with improved patient outcomes and safety. Additionally, there are business benefits to adopters in terms of improved reputation, trust, and efficiency.
Kinzal Jalan is an experienced B2B content marketer with demonstrated expertise in Health, SaaS and Technology.