Qualitative examination of collaboration in team-based primary care during the COVID-19 pandemic Academic Article uri icon

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  • ObjectiveThe objective of this study was to describe Ontario primary care teams’ experiences with collaboration during the COVID-19 pandemic. Descriptive qualitative methods using focus groups conducted virtually for data collection.SettingPrimary care teams located in Ontario, Canada.ParticipantsOur study conducted 11 focus groups with 10 primary care teams, with a total of 48 participants reflecting a diverse range of interprofessional healthcare providers and administrators working in primary care.ResultsThree themes were identified using thematic analysis: (1) prepandemic team functioning facilitated adaptation, (2) new processes of team interactions and collaboration, and (3) team as a foundation of support.ConclusionsResults revealed the importance of collaboration for provider well-being, and the challenges of providing collaborative team-based primary care in the pandemic context. Caution against converting primary care collaboration to predominantly virtual modalities postpandemic is recommended. Further research on team functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic in other healthcare organisations will offer additional insight regarding how primary care teams can work collaboratively in a postpandemic environment.


  • Ashcroft, Rachelle
  • Donnelly, Catherine
  • Lam, Simon
  • Kourgiantakis, Toula
  • Adamson, Keith
  • Verilli, David
  • Dolovich, Lisa
  • Sheffield, Peter
  • Kirvan, Anne
  • Dancey, Maya
  • Gill, Sandeep
  • Mehta, Kavita
  • Sur, Deepy
  • Brown, Judith Belle

publication date

  • February 2023