Conditions influencing collaboration among the primary care disciplines as they prepare the future primary care physician workforce

Patricia A. Carney, Erin K. Thayer, Larry A. Green, Eric J. Warm, Eric S. Holmboe, Carol Carraccio, M. Patrice Eiff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Much can be gained by the three primary care disciplines collaborating on efforts to transform residency training toward interprofessional collaborative practice. We describe findings from a study de-signed to align primary care disciplines toward implementing interprofessional education. METHODS: In this mixed methods study, we included faculty, residents and other interprofessional learners in family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatrics from nine institutions across the United States. We administered a web-based survey in April/May of 2018 and used qualitative analyses of field notes to study resident exposure to team-based care during training, estimates of career choice in programs that are innovating, and supportive and challenging conditions that influence collaboration among the three disciplines. Complete data capture was attained for 96.3% of participants. RESULTS: Among family medicine resident graduates, an estimated 87.1% chose to go into primary care compared to 12.4% of internal medicine, and 36.5% of pediatric resident graduates. Qualitative themes found to positively influence cross-disciplinary collaboration included relationship development, communication of shared goals, alignment with health system/other institu-tional initiatives, and professional identity as primary care physicians. Challenges included expressed concerns by participants that by working together, the disciplines would experience a loss of identity and would be indistinguishable from one another. Another qualitative finding was that overwhelming stressors plague primary care training programs in the current health care climate—a great concern. These include competing demands, disruptive transitions, and lack of resources. CONCLUSIONS: Uniting the primary care disciplines toward educational and clinical transformation toward interprofessional collaborative practice is challenging to accomplish.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-30
Number of pages10
JournalFamily medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Family Practice


Dive into the research topics of 'Conditions influencing collaboration among the primary care disciplines as they prepare the future primary care physician workforce'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this