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Shared-Care Model Improves Professional Satisfaction

Last Updated: June 05, 2013.

Shifting primary care practice toward a shared-care model for work distribution and responsibility can improve professional satisfaction, according to research published in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

WEDNESDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- Shifting primary care practice toward a shared-care model for work distribution and responsibility can improve professional satisfaction, according to research published in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

Christine A. Sinsky, M.D., from Medical Associates Clinic and Health Plans in Dubuque, Iowa, and colleagues made site visits to 23 high-performing primary care practices to investigate how these practices distribute functions among the team, use technology to their advantage, improve outcomes with data, and make the job of primary care feasible and enjoyable as a life's vocation.

The researchers identified innovations that can increase practice joy and mitigate physician burnout, including proactive planned care, with pre-visit planning and pre-visit laboratory tests; sharing clinical care among a team, with expanded rooming protocols, standing orders, and panel management; sharing clerical tasks with collaborative documentation (scribing), non-physician order entry, and streamlined prescription management; improving communication by verbal messaging and in-box management; and improving team functioning through co-location, team meetings, and work flow mapping.

"Our observations suggest that a shift from a physician-centric model of work distribution and responsibility to a shared-care model, with a higher level of clinical support staff per physician and frequent forums for communication, can result in high-functioning teams, improved professional satisfaction, and greater joy in practice," the authors write.

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