Team approach is important in palliative care.
An interdisciplinary team works collaboratively and makes group decisions about patient care.
In palliative care an interdisciplinary team can comprises a variety of disciplines – the core team should consist of at least one physician, one nurse and one member from a psychosocial discipline; others may include chaplains, art therapist, occupational therapist, speech therapist and also volunteers.
Regular team meetings help in consensus building and each member contributes the knowledge and skills from his own experience.
For a team to function effectively there should be appropriate communication; goals and roles must be clear with a focus on the patient and family.
Threats to the team include role overload, conflict, and stress in providing care to patients with advanced disease and complex needs.
Paice JA. The Interdisciplinary Team. Emanuel LL, Librach SL (Ed). Palliative Care – Core Skills and Clinical Competencies. Second Edition, St.Louis, Missouri, Elsevier, 2011, pp. 540-551.