Teamwork when Conducting Family Meetings: Concepts, Terminology, and the Importance of Team-Team Practices.

Year of Publication


Date Published

2019 Apr 30

ISSN Number



<p>Family meetings, which bring together members of a seriously ill patient's family and the interprofessional team (IPT), have been widely recognized as promoting shared decision making for hospitalized patients, particularly those in intensive care units. The planning and conducting of interprofessional family meetings is hampered, however, by a lack of clarity about who is doing what and when, which in turn can lead to inefficiencies and uncoordinated efforts. This manuscript describes how members of the IPT interact with one another (what we have termed team-team practices), distinguishing these interactions from how the IPT engages directly with family members (team-family practices) in preparing for and conducting family meetings. While most research and guidelines have focused on team-family practices that directly affect patient and family level outcomes (e.g., safety and satisfaction), team-team practices are needed to coordinate team contributions and optimize the skills of the diverse team. Team members' knowledge and attitudes also contribute to patient and family outcomes as well as team outcomes. Yet without attention to team-team practices prior to, during, and after a family meeting, the family level outcomes are less likely to be achieved as are team wellbeing outcomes (e.g., reduced burnout and staff retention). Drawing upon team theory, we present a set of key concepts and corresponding terms that enable a more precise description of team-team practices as well as team-family practices, aiming to help with team training and evaluation and to enable future research of these distinct yet inter-related practices.</p>



Alternate Title

J Pain Symptom Manage




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