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Ann Fam Med. 2013 May-Jun;11(3):279-81. doi: 10.1370/afm.1506.

Organizational leadership for building effective health care teams.

Author information

  • 1Process of Care Research Branch, Behavioral Research Program, Division of Cancer Control and Population Science, National Cancer Institute, Rockville, Maryland, USA. taplins@mail.nih.gov

Abstract

The movement toward accountable care organizations and patient-centered medical homes will increase with implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA will therefore give further impetus to the growing importance of teams in health care. Teams typically involve 2 or more people embedded in a larger social system who differentiate their roles, share common goals, interact with each other, and perform tasks affecting others. Multiple team types fit within this definition, and they all need support from leadership to succeed. Teams have been invoked as a necessary tool to address the needs of patients with multiple chronic conditions and to address medical workforce shortages. Invoking teams, however, is much easier than making them function effectively, so we need to consider the implications of the growing emphasis on teams. Although the ACA will spur team development, organizational leadership must use what we know now to train, support, and incentivize team function. Meanwhile, we must also advance research regarding teams in health care to give those leaders more evidence to guide their work.

KEYWORDS:

collaboration; health care delivery; health care organizations; health care teams; health services research; quality of health care

PMID:
23690329
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3659146
Free PMC Article
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