Dr. Handly and the Multidisciplinary Team

Sue Handly, MD, was recently recruited into a multispecialty group of 40 physicians. The clinic offers a wide scope of services, including a relatively sophisticated radiology department, physical therapy, and a same-day surgery unit. The clinic has been growing and employs highly trained healthcare providers.

In addition to her medical degree, Sue completed a master’s degree in health administration while she was practicing in South Carolina. She always wanted to return home to Texas and, after an extensive search, found this group in a suburb of Austin, which was relatively close to her hometown. She thoroughly enjoyed the time she spent with the health system’s organizational development team during management training, which performed team building with different system groups and committees to improve their performance.

During her first week in the new practice, Sue noticed that the staff and physicians worked like a multidisciplinary team. Each practiced reasonably good medicine but did not interact or communicate well with one another; the staff and physicians worked together but did not feel like team members. Sue wanted to change this, so she obtained the permission of the clinic’s executive group to lead a team-building effort. A team-building steering committee was created, and over the course of several meetings, they established the following mission statement and goals:

Overall organizational mission statement: Improvement of patients’ health


Reduction in barriers to access to care

Improvement in practice’s financial performance

Enhancement of physician and staff satisfaction

The committee then set specific, measurable operational objectives (adapted from Bodenheimer 2007):

At least 80 percent of patients with diabetes in the practice will have hemoglobin A1c lower than 8.

At least 90 percent of nonurgent requests will receive an appointment within one week.

The practice will achieve $1.2 million in revenue per month.

Each team member will establish an explicitly identified goal for personal professional development.

Physicians’ and staff members’ roles will be reevaluated and reconfigured in the next six months.

Eighty percent of staff will be cross-trained to substitute for other roles.

Sue knows that this was just a start, but she is happy to have established these goals. Now for the next steps.

Case Studies:

The student will complete each case study scenario and answer questions from the case studies outlined in the assignment using the guide below. One reference (within the last four years). Address all five areas below.

  1. Introduction
  • Present an overview of the key problems and issues in the case.
  • Provide a thesis statement that summarizes your analysis in one or two sentences.
  1. Background, key facts, and issues
  • Provide background information, relevant facts, and the most important issues.
  • Tie to class materials, making sure to include how these issues impact the organization and individuals in the organization.
  1. Alternatives
  • Outline two possible alternatives.
  • Discuss the critical constraints.
  • Explain the strengths and weaknesses of the alternatives.
  1. Proposed solution
  • Recommend one solution.
  • Explain why this solution was chosen.
  • Support this solution with facts and class materials.
  • Provide personal experiences, if applicable.
  1. Recommendations
  • Determine and discuss the specific strategies needed to accomplish the proposed solution.
  • If applicable, define what further information is needed.

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