Learning from Effective Primary Care Teams

The Quality Improvement (QI) Program launched a qualitative research project in late 2014 asking the question: What makes primary care teams effective or high-functioning? 

The evolution of health care provision in the community is moving from a single primary care provider (usually a family physician) providing health care patient by patient in a reactive context, to an organizational one – a primary care team proactively meeting the needs of a defined population. Teaming - a verb - refers to the collective actions or processes associated with a primary health care team performing optimally. The goal of the teaming project is to learn from high-functioning teams and apply that knowledge to the development of a blueprint and action plan that will guide primary care teams, within an improvement paradigm, to function effectively with ultimate outcomes leading to improved health of populations, improved patient and provider experiences, and improved value.

In April 2016, the environmental scan for the teaming project was completed with case studies of nominated, high-functioning primary care teams. The case studies, representing teams from Alberta, Ontario and Quebec, marked the last element of the scan that included a robust literature review and a series of expert interviews. The case studies have provided insights into high-functioning teams – how they function and what makes it feasible. Through observation and a series of one to one and group interviews, we have been able to identify themes that emerge as attributes of these high-functioning teams. While the context and jurisdictional environment of each organization is unique, the case study teams share attributes that are reflective of high-functioning capability.

Read our new report "The Teaming Project - Learning from high-functioning interprofessional primary care teams."  The QI Program team would like to acknowledge the use of funds through the Fidani Chair in Improvement and Innovation that have enabled the Teaming Project.
DFCM Teaming Project