Because improving collaboration is an ongoing process that will require leadership oversight and management, develop some working goals to help you manage your efforts in enhancing collaboration:
- Assess nursing and medical staff perceptions of the current status of collaboration.
- Ask the organization's leadership staff about their perceptions of the status of collaboration in the organization. Include mid-level managers in this assessment.
- Identify two successful collaborative efforts that have occurred on the past three years and review the following:
- Why were they successful?
- Is the effort still in progress?
- Who or what was the motivating force for the success?
- Were patient outcomes related? If so, how were they measured?
- Obtain input from nursing and medical staff on their perception of the top three patient care concerns that need collaborative attention.
- Compare these results with the responses from the leadership team.
After you have collected information:
- Share responses to survey questions at the next management meeting
- Develop a collaborative improvement team and have top management appoint people who submitted targeted comments and suggestions on their surveys
- Involve staff responsible for compliance with The Joint Commission (formerly JCAHO) standards and risk management in your improvement processes
- Include the concept of collaborative practice in your facility's orientation process
—Shelley Cohen, RN, BS, CEN