Nurse-Physician Teamwork in the Emergency Department
- Author(s): Ajeigbe, David Oladipo
- Advisor(s): McNeese-Smith, Donna
- et al.
Background: Teamwork gained momentum in the 1980s. Research studies in the military and aviation demonstrated that teamwork is essential to safety. There were limited studies dealing with the practice of teamwork between nurses and physicians in the Emergence Departments (EDs). Aims: Descriptive aim of the study was to examine differences between staff in the Interventional and Control Groups on perception of staff teamwork. The exploratory aim was to examine staff perception of job satisfaction, work environment, autonomy, and control over practice. Design: The Interventional Group comprised four EDs that participated in teamwork training and operationalized its principles in their EDs. Control Group EDs comprised four EDs which did not participate in the training. Survey questionnaires were used for data collection.
Setting and Participants: Staff from four Interventional and four Control Group EDs throughout California participated in the study. There were 191 participants from the Interventional Group EDs and 307 from the Control Group EDs. Main Outcome Measures: Differences between staff who worked in the Interventional Group EDs and staff who worked in the Control Group EDs on perception of teamwork, job satisfaction, work environment, autonomy, and control over practice were assessed. Results: Staff who worked in the Interventional Group EDs showed significant differences compared with staff who worked in the Control Group EDs on staff perception of teamwork (p = 0.006), job satisfaction (p < 0.0001), work environment (p = 0.006), autonomy (p < 0.0001), and control over practice (p < 0.0001). There were no significant differences in satisfaction with care received by patients who received care in the interventional group EDs compared with those who received care in the control group EDs. Data on medical and non-medical errors were not collected due to lack of willingness to give approval by potential participating hospitals. Conclusion: Active teamwork practice between nurses and physicians in the EDs appeared to be associated with increased job satisfaction, perception of work environment, autonomy, and control over practice of both nurses and physicians who worked in the Interventional Group over those who worked in the Control Group EDs.