ARTICLETeamwork Building Healthier Workplaces and Providing Safer Patient CareClark, Paul R. MSN, MA, RNAuthor Information School of Nursing, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio. Corresponding Author: Paul R. Clark, MSN, MA, RN, 7703 Floyd Curl Dr, San Antonio, TX 78229 ([email protected]). The author thanks Mr Scott McConnaha for his editorial assistance. Critical Care Nursing Quarterly: July 2009 - Volume 32 - Issue 3 - p 221-231 doi: 10.1097/CNQ.0b013e3181ab923f Buy Metrics Abstract A changing healthcare landscape requires nurses to care for more patients with higher acuity during their shift than ever before. These more austere working conditions are leading to increased burnout. In addition, patient safety is not of the quality or level that is required. To build healthier workplaces where safe care is provided, formal teamwork training is recommended. Formal teamwork training programs, such as that provided by the MedTeams group, TeamSTEPPS (Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety), or participatory action research programs such as the Healthy Workplace Intervention, have decreased errors in the workplace, increased nurse satisfaction and retention rates, and decreased staff turnover. This article includes necessary determinants of teamwork, brief overviews of team-building programs, and examples of research programs that demonstrate how teamwork brings about healthier workplaces that are safer for patients. Teamwork programs can bring about these positive results when implemented and supported by the hospital system. © 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.