Nurse practitioners’ perceptions of interprofessional team functioning with implications for nurse managers
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AIMS: To determine the perceptions of nurse practitioners (NPs) about the level of functioning of their interprofessional teams. BACKGROUND: Interprofessional teams are a global trend, and nurses play leadership roles in their management. Little is known about the impact of specific barriers to team functioning and the role of the nurse manager on team functioning. METHODS: Ninety-eight NPs at a conference completed the Interprofessional Team Functioning Survey (ITFS). RESULTS: The survey items with the lowest mean scores were related to organisational systems. These items included workplace policies that support interprofessional teamwork, in particular, orientation to the interprofessional team. Items that generated lower mean scores were adequate time to work as a member of the interprofessional team, team dynamics, collaboration among team members and the sharing of responsibility. CONCLUSION: Organisational and team relational issues can be addressed through organisational management strategies. Nurse managers have an important role in facilitating high functioning interprofessional teams. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING MANAGEMENT: Strategies for managers to support interprofessional team functioning emerged. These strategies include ensuring that there are appropriate policies, orientation of new members, allocation of time to support interprofessional teamwork, leadership to enhance team collaboration and clear delineation of responsibilities of each member.
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