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Intensive Crit Care Nurs. 1996 Apr;12(2):64-70.

Collaborative practice within the intensive care unit: a deconstruction.


The concept of collaborative practice has attracted much attention in the last few years--how well do doctors and nurses work together as a team in providing the best possible care for their patients? Consequently there are numerous articles on the subject, most of which seem to suggest that collaborative practice is essential, particularly within the intensive care unit (ICU). It has been linked to both job satisfaction and to patient outcomes (mortality or readmission to the ICU). Indeed, it seems to have evolved as a benchmark for good ICU practice. This paper focuses on some of the most influential writings on this phenomenon, the first stage of a postgraduate study on collaborative practice in intensive care. A deconstructive reading of such literature raises some interesting questions. There are inadequacies in the existing claims, which perhaps suggest that a re-examination of both the feasibility and desirability of collaborative practice is needed.

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