The Interdisciplinary Group: A Team Approach

The most recognized “team” in healthcare is probably the doctor and the nurse. We have all seen them working together to diagnose, treat, and cure. They each have their own specific job and for hundreds of years this team has worked very well to provide patient care.

For the best in end-of-life care, this team approach is taken to another level. The Interdisciplinary Group (IDG) is commonly used in the hospice environment. This team approach still includes a doctor, the medical director, and a nurse—often called the clinical manager. However, beyond the doctor and nurse, several other individuals are involved in the IDT. Each member of this team has the focus of providing the best quality of life for the remaining days of that patient. Those other team members include licensed social workers, chaplains, volunteers, bereavement (or grief counselors), and sometimes even family members who all work together to understand that particular patient and their needs. These needs often include medical, social and spiritual. You will see that many people on our blog team are also part of the IDG.

This team approach is so important that the entire team meets every two weeks to talk about each patient which the team is caring for and supporting, and not only the patient, but their family as well. Each member of the team is given the opportunity for input so that the whole team can provide the care that best benefits the patient and their family. Nearing the end of life can be sad and stressful, but knowing that there is an entire team there to support and add life to days when days can no longer be added to life is hopeful and comforting for patients and families.  What do you think of the IDG approach to hospice care? Do you have any questions for our blog contributors who are regularly part of the IDG?


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