TeamSTEPPS Frequently Asked Questions


Where can I find promotional and training materials?

All TeamSTEPPS curriculum tools and materials are available through AHRQ's National Implementation project website here.

At UNC Health Care, we have adapted many materials and created some custom tools as well. These are compiled in the Implementation Package of the website.

Would you participate in TeamSTEPPS all over again?

As an organization, we have continued to participate in TeamSTEPPS adding new units about every six months. We have trained more than 70 clinical and performance improvement master trainers covering 15 clinical areas. A full description of the history of TeamSTEPPS at UNC Health Care is available here.

Patient safety leadership organizations, such as The Leapfrog Group, National Quality Forum and The Joint Commission, are calling for teamwork training in health care as well as the evidence that supports the value of teamwork training. Also, AHRQ is currently supporting no-cost master training through the national implementation contract. Even if UNC did not have an established TeamSTEPPS program, this would be an excellent time to start.

Has it affected employee satisfaction?

Based on staff interviews in the pilot areas (Pediatric and Surgical Intensive Care Units), staff reported improved experience of teamwork post-training, and evaluated the implementation as effective in nearly all cases. TeamSTEPPS quickly gained a reputation for improving teamwork and employee experience as evidenced by the number of requests for training and implementation.

Has it affected patient satisfaction?

Although UNC's overall patient satisfaction scores have improved since the beginning of TeamSTEPPS implementation, we have not studied whether units that have implemented TeamSTEPPS had higher increases in patient satisfaction rates versus units that have not implemented TeamSTEPPS.

What outcomes are you using to measure success of this training?

To date, we have measured teamwork using a behavioral observation tool for non-technical skills. Of the 5 units observed, all of them showed improvements in teamwork behavior with 4 of the 5 showing significant improvements. In addition, employee survey data has indicated improvements in staff perceptions of teamwork and communication openness.

Clinical outcomes include patient safety measures such as hospital-acquired infection rates and readmission rates. We are planning further analysis that will include comparison of these outcomes between ICUs that have completed TeamSTEPPS implementation vs. ICUs that have not had any TeamSTEPPS training.

We also make it a requirement for units to collect data on at least one measure related to completing a critical intervention. Examples include time to place a patient on ECMO and time to move a rapidly deteriorating patient to a higher level of care.

How can our organization prepare to implement TeamSTEPPS? What should we be ready for?

We have developed a readiness checklist to help teams understand the level of commitment and expectations for participation. We have found support from physician and nurse leadership to be critical for successful implementation and sustainability efforts, but it is also essential to have a multi-disciplinary team guiding the implementation.

Would you recommend TeamSTEPPS to other health care organizations?

Yes. Based on documentation of encouraging results and positive feedback from staff at all levels, we would recommend TeamSTEPPS for other organizations.

Is it worth the financial investment?

Yes. The positive results we are seeing could very well lead to cost-savings for the organization.