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Critically assess how interprofessional collaboration is the key to delivering modern health and social care services - Essay Example

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Inter-professional Collaboration: An Overview In both the health clinical and research arenas, inter-professional or interdisciplinary collaboration is increasingly important. In the face of changing and increasing needs, together with the problems faced by health consumers, Watkins, Gibbon, Leathley, Cooper and Barer (2001) argued that it is no longer appropriate for healthcare professionals to work individually and independently, taking responsibility only associated with their professional role…
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Critically assess how interprofessional collaboration is the key to delivering modern health and social care services

Download file to see previous pages... The complexity of human health which professionals face suggests the need for a reconstruction of how they conceptualize and create knowledge. Further, such knowledge can be deepened through a dialectical process of people reflecting and acting with others to both change and understand it (Gaventa & Cornwall, 2001). In this sense, interdisciplinary structure may allow health professionals to conduct studies and collaboration between them in a research process that would increase the quality of research outcomes. It has been argued that the strength of the inter-professional collaborative research group lies in the framework where contributions from a wide range of professional perspectives are incorporated into the research process (Bond & Thompson, 1996; Ryan & Hassel, 2001). Larson (2003) identified that successful collaborations would comprise a number of multi-professional teams. Similarly, Ryan and Hassell (2001) identified collaboration as the main characteristic of inter-professional research and explained that collaboration across disciplines leads to the identification of health problems through the contribution of respective knowledge and experience from different professionals in a research process with open channels of communication and the absence of professional hierarchies. Drinka and Clark (2000) argued that professional differences between group members have been identified as the basic problem in regards to communication which is one of the most important elements of a successful inter-professional collaboration in research (Gelling & Chatfield, 2001). Poor inter-professional communication, including the system where information is misheard, misread and misunderstood, would break down the working relationship between professionals in groups and affect how professionals work collaboratively in the decision-making and knowledge-producing process. On the other hand, due to professional differences and distincts values and knowledge that each professional holds, every member knows less about each other and so it is easy to see the problem of unequal effort in their working relationship and the difficulties in building up a relationship of trust without mutual respect. The lack of trust would limit the sharing of responsibility or workload between professionals which seems inevitable and closely related to the entire research process. Group dynamics can also be a challenge and would distort collective discourse that may generate invalid understanding. As Bray et al. (2000) argued, defensive routines and groupthink would challenge the critical reflection process within the group and the ability to assess the situation from various experience and knowledge bases and build more wide-ranging and objective ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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