The article focuses on the need for and the characteristics and positive consequences of interdisciplinary teamwork in health care. Interprofessional collaboration is an important element in total quality management. Factors that determine the success of team work are described, such as a management that promotes openness and an administrative organization that promotes interdisciplinary consultation. Other factors have to do with leadership, shared goals and values, meeting management and planning skills, communication, and also the (degree of) knowledge and the (quality of) perception of competences of other health care workers. The shared care plan is stressed as an important tool. In this, the joint planning of goals for intervention and care is essential. Health care workers with different professional knowledge and background have to harmonize their intervention plan according to the competences and goal settings of the other team members. The core of effective interprofessional teamwork is the presence of interprofessional competences such as these. A brief description of the components and performance criteria of the competence of interprofessional collaboration is given.