Examining the Team Process: Developing and Sustaining Effective Craniofacial Team Care

  • Lynn M. Fox
  • Patricia Ann Stone


Craniofacial teams have evolved since their inception in the mid-twentieth century. They were created to provide comprehensive medical care for patients with complex conditions related to craniofacial differences. In order to sustain efficient and effective teams, craniofacial teams must establish a strong team foundation by allowing for complete team formation, creating a compelling team mission, ensuring the appropriate team composition, and securing appropriate team leadership. Teams must continue to develop and progress, however, in order to maintain and improve upon team functioning. This can be accomplished by direct focus on and training in the elements of team process which include decision making, identifying team roles, developing collaboration skills, improving communication skills, fostering mutual respect, creating team goals, managing conflict, and considering the influence of values and ethics. These actions require skills that must be constantly evaluated and often require direct instruction for team members. Monitoring the team process and providing team skills training promote improved team functioning and, subsequently, improved patient outcomes.


Team Member Team Functioning Team Meeting Cleave Palate Team Process 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Dental EcologyUniversity of North Carolina School of DentistryChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of Plastic and Reconstructive SurgeryAkron Children’s HospitalAkronUSA

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