How Do Teams in Quality Improvement Collaboratives Interact?

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Abstract:

Background: The multi-organizational collaborative is a popular model for quality improvement (QI) initiatives. It assumes organizations will share information and social support. However, there is no comprehensive documentation of the extent to which teams do interact. Considering QI collaboratives as networks, interactions among teams were documented, and the associations between network roles and performance were examined.

Methods: A telephone survey of official team contact persons for 94 site teams in three QI collaboratives was conducted in 2002 and 2003. Four performance measures were used to assess the usefulness of ties to other teams and being considered a leader by peers.

Results: Eighty percent of the teams said they would contact another team again if they felt the need. Teams made a change as a direct result of interaction in 86% of reported relationships. Teams typically exchanged tools such as software and interacted outside of planned activities. Having a large number of ties to other teams is strongly related to the number of mentions as a leader. Both of these variables are related to faculty-assessed performance, number of changes the team made to improve care, and depth of those changes.

Discussion: The findings suggest that collaborative teams do indeed exchange important information, and the social dynamics of the collaboratives contribute to individual and collaborative success.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • Published monthly, The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety is a peer-reviewed publication dedicated to providing health professionals with the information they need to promote the quality and safety of health care. The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety invites original manuscripts on the development, adaptation, and/or implementation of innovative thinking, strategies, and practices in improving quality and safety in health care. Case studies, program or project reports, reports of new methodologies or new applications of methodologies, research studies on the effectiveness of improvement interventions, and commentaries on issues and practices are all considered.

    Also known as Joint Commission Journal on Quality Improvement and Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Safety
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