A paucity of data about patient and family perspectives of interprofessional collaborative (IPC) teams may hinder the effectiveness of healthcare teamwork. These findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Nursing.

IPC teams are associated with improved patient outcomes. The blueprint of an IPC team was defined in 2016 as having core competencies of values and ethics, roles and responsibilities, interprofessional communication, and teams and teamwork. IPC teams comprise healthcare professionals who work in cooperation, coordination, and collaboration with patients and their families to deliver high-quality care. The interpretation of this framework varies on the basis of culture, language, and local healthcare system.

Investigators from 2 universities in North Carolina conducted an integrative review of the literature. Seventeen studies conducted in 7 different countries and published between 2000 and 2020 were used to describe the current national understanding of patient and family perspectives of IPC teams.

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Honesty, trust, integrity, empathy, and support were the most important themes that affected patient perceptions of teamwork. This indicated that patients valued an ethical approach to delivering healthcare.

Positive experiences were based on patients’ understanding of their health condition and their ability to be an active member of the IPC team. Congeniality and support among the healthcare team members enhanced patients’ trust and confidence. Experiences were reported as positive more often when family members were included as valuable members of the team.

Negative experiences were observed when patients were not given sufficient time to develop a rapport with the team. Too many members of the team in attendance at once was perceived as overwhelming, resulting in a negative patient perspective. In addition, patients who were not encouraged to collaborate with the team tended to have negative perceptions and felt the team was unsupportive or disorganized.

The investigators concluded that further study exploring the gap in patients’ and families’ understanding of IPC teams is needed to improve IPC healthcare delivery.


Sigmon LB, Reis PJ, Woodard EK, Hinkle JF. Patient and family perceptions of interprofessional collaborative teamwork: An integrative review. J Clin Nurs. Published online March 23, 2022. doi:10.1111/jocn.16295