TeamSTEPPS is an evidence-based set of teamwork tools, aimed at optimizing patient outcomes by improving communication and teamwork skills among health care professionals. TeamSTEPPS teaches teams of health care professionals, enabling them to respond quickly and effectively to whatever situations arise.
This curriculum was developed by a panel of experts, incorporating more than 25 years of scientific research that has been conducted on teams and team performance. Teamwork has been found to be one of the key initiatives within patient safety that can transform the culture within health care. Patient safety experts agree that communication and other teamwork skills are essential to the delivery of quality health care and to preventing and mitigating medical errors and patient injury and harm.
A key priority for ASHNHA’s Patient Safety Committee is ensuring Alaska hospitals engage in safe transfers of care. Checklists, communication and skilled clinical care are important safeguards to ensure effective transfers of care. Errors in communication during handoffs are a significant source of medical error and put patients at risk.
Integrating concepts including effective communication, cultural competence, and patient-and-family-centered care can help address the unique needs of each patient. In addition, engaging family, neighbors, friends, or paid staff as “Care Partners” can help provide an extra level of support and safety for those in need of extra help while sick.