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Despite Known Link Between Poor Teamwork and Errors, Only 30% of Medical Schools Provide Teamwork Training

PR Web

Collierville, TN (PRWEB) July 22, 2014

A report from the Institute of Medicine's says, "Divisive battles among the health care disciplines have resulted in inhibited teamwork and collaboration by health care professionals." Unfortunately, only about 30 percent of medical schools are trying to fix the poor teamwork cited in the study with interprofessional education programs that teach communication, teamwork, and collaboration among health care professionals.

Many of the successful curricula are similar to LifeWings' proven team training programs. Interprofessional education programs typically bring together medical students from different areas to work in a collaborative setting. One such training package at The Vanderbilt Program in Interprofessional Learning (VPIL), brings together teams of four students – a physician, nurse, pharmacist, and social worker – from nine different medical training institutions in Nashville, TN. The interdisciplinary teams work together in clinical settings for weekly sessions over a two-year period. The teams also participate in simulations.

Thomas Jefferson University follows a different model of teamwork training. Taking a page out of the LifeWings playbook for interprofessional training, students from multiple disciplines participate in a TeamSTEPPS course1 from the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHQR). TeamSTEPPS training emphasizes leadership, situational awareness, team support, and communication skills.

LifeWings, a Memphis, TN based patient safety training company, has been training health care teams to use better teamwork skills since 2001. The group of physicians, nurses, fighter pilots, former NASA astronauts, airline captains, medical executives and insurance experts adapted to medical schools the same teamwork training concepts and safety tools that have worked in high reliability organizations. Over 150 health care organizations have adopted the LifeWings interprofessional teamwork training model.

Despite the spread of these programs, Dr. Barbara Brandt, the Director of the National Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education, says interprofessional programs are still in "relative infancy" with implementations in only approximately 30 percent of medical schools. Dr. Brandt expects nearly every medical school to have some form of
team-based curriculum in the next few years. She stated that what is promising is the new emphasis on research and effectiveness in team based training and care.

Steve Harden, the CEO of LifeWings, agreeing with Dr. Brandt, saying, "Every medical school should have an IPE program. Safe, effective health care is absolutely a team sport. IPE programs provide the teamwork skills medical professionals need to provide high quality, error free care in a complex environment. The LifeWings training system is one way any IPE program can provide the very skills new physicians, nurses, and clinicians will need every day in a challenging world."

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The LifeWings interprofessional teamwork training program was formed in response to the 1999 Institute of Medicine report, "To Err is Human: Building a Safer Healthcare System" that revealed as many as 98,000 deaths and additional expenses or losses of as much as $29B dollars resulted each year from preventable medical errors. LifeWings CEO, Steve Harden, an experienced pilot and teamwork training expert, developed the system that adapted best practices from other high reliability industries to the health care setting.

Teaching institutions that would like to explore LifeWings programs for their IPE development can receive a free consult with LifeWings by contacting us here.,_Evidence_based_Estimate_of_Patient_Harms.2.aspx

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Copyright:(c) 2014 PRWEB.COM Newswire


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