Poor teamwork results in preventable morbidity and mortality for mothers and babies. Suboptimal communication and lack of leadership cost not only lives but also money that is diverted from clinical care to insurance and litigation. Avoidable harm is usually not the result of staff failing their duty of care, it is the result of poor training failing hard-worked staff. A few simple teamwork and leadership behaviours can make a huge difference to outcome and experience for women and their companions, yet they are often missing from maternity care. Recent research has identified the problems and solutions, including the best way to train maternity teams to make a palpable difference. We describe simple yet evidence-based methods to improve teams and leaders.
Keywords: SBAR; communication; emergency; handover; interprofessional; leader; patient care team; simulation; teamwork; training.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.