The daily need for clinical collaboration
People with mental health problems come to us seeking care on a daily basis. Complex issues and overcoming challenges are inevitable, therefore it is unrealistic to take on the task alone. Facing these issues effectively involves taking into account countless biopsychosocial factors and mastering very diverse specialized skills in interpersonal, diagnostic, therapeutic, social and community fields. Many clinicians have experienced the effectiveness of collaborating with various partners within their local network. In the context of a special report reviewing the literature on the effectiveness of collaborative mental health care in the treatment of depression, we will examine its daily clinical advantages experienced by both the population and clinicians.
Collaboration between a patient’s care providers demonstrates existing links and allows for consistency in interventions, instilling confidence and improving the patient’s involvement in the treatment process. The patient can be accompanied and more easily introduced to available resources. Moreover, the quick transmission of information to each care provider optimizes interventions. Collaborative care also allows for the concerted involvement of various resources. With role sharing, these resources make the most of each clinician’s expertise.
Interprofessional collaboration is a great tool to help overcome difficult clinical mental health situations. It helps clarify our perspective, see our clients in a different light, avoid the pitfalls of splitting and obtain recommendations that draw upon complementary expertise. This type of collaboration allows us to share the challenges we face in complex interventions, obtain emotional support and feel a sense of involvement instead of one of solitude. Furthermore, collaboration within an interdisciplinary team and within a local network is invaluable since the responsibility of difficult decisions can be shared as a group and their application can be validated. In addition, frequent discussions increase our understanding of our partners’ abilities and promote knowledge sharing.
Providing clinical support for family doctors is at the core of collaborative care. The scientific literature reviewed in this report describes concrete and measurable strategies implemented to properly organize collaboration, in view of optimizing care provided by family doctors. It also identifies specific and effective practice recommendations. We hope the following material will provide food for thought regarding a meaningful and rewarding daily clinical practice: meeting, concertedly sharing our efforts, learning from each other and collaborating!