Communication in interprofessional health care teams from the perspective of patients and staff

Introduction: The quality of communication among health care professionals is an important aspect of interprofessional teamwork. As there is a gap in research on communication in interprofessional teams as assessed by team members and patients, the aim of this study was to analyze interprofessional team communication and team participation in a Slovenian general hospital from the perspective of health care professionals and patients.

Methods: This was a case report study using a multi-methods study with a survey (n = 150) and a qualitative approach with focus groups (n = 27) and in-depth interviews with interprofessional team members (n = 22) and patients (n = 20).

Results: Interprofessional team members rated communication as relatively good, being least satisfied with equal participation in team communication, especially communication with physicians due to interdisciplinary rivalry. Nursing assistants particularly emphasized the lack of time for communication with patients, dissatisfaction with communication with physicians, and overload with documentation.

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