Skip to content

Multidisciplinary team working: Collaboration and conflict

by Adrian Jones
International Journal of Mental Health Nursing ()
Get full text at journal


The aim of this paper is to report on findings identifying some of the difficulties encountered by the multidisciplinary team in the development and implementation of a care pathway for patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Policy direction has shifted towards greater team working and blurring of professional boundaries. Moreover, there is greater need to deliver care according to set standards and for patients to reach particular outcomes of care. Care pathways are relatively new for psychiatry and will potentially uncover tensions within the team. Data were collected by participant observation and semistructured interviews over a period of 12 months on an acute psychiatric unit. The care team developed the care pathway and the process of development and implementation was observed through action research. Cross-sectional indexing was used to analyse the data, and themes were developed using interview and observational data collection methods. Clinicians argued strongly for clear role boundaries but also defended their perceived control over health care from other professions. The findings indicate that designing a care pathway for people with schizophrenia may produce conflicting perceptions from the team. Conflict may arise through professions being unwilling to accept plurality over roles, which may hinder progress in meeting the needs of patients. The findings also counter the impression that care pathways can be implemented with little impact on the team.

Cite this document (BETA)

Readership Statistics

58 Readers on Mendeley
by Discipline
31% Medicine and Dentistry
28% Social Sciences
17% Psychology
by Academic Status
19% Student > Ph. D. Student
16% Student > Bachelor
14% Researcher
by Country
7% United Kingdom
3% Canada
2% Indonesia

Sign up today - FREE

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research. Learn more

  • All your research in one place
  • Add and import papers easily
  • Access it anywhere, anytime

Start using Mendeley in seconds!

Sign up & Download

Already have an account? Sign in