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Qual Health Res. 1993 Feb;3(1):74-90.

The missing voice in interdisciplinary communication.

Abstract

The research problem investigated in this article emerged from a year-long ethnographic study of the interdisciplinary process of teams evaluating children for mental retardation/developmental disabilities. The researchers noticed that when a discipline was not present at team meetings, others attempted to speak for it. This article examines the team process and case consequences of such a "missing voice." Data collected through participant observation and videotaping were triangulated with transcripts, written and audiovisual records, and an interview with the missing team member. This process revealed a trail of ambiguous findings and uncertainty on the part of team members of disciplines related to that of the missing member. The "missing" member identified the knowledge, assessment skills, and theoretical perspective she could have contributed if consulted. The findings demonstrate that (a) team members bring differing knowledge and observational perspectives and (b) team deliberations appear to be a function of who is present and what is negotiated.

PMID:
7681340
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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