Decisions, Nursing Judgment, and Inter-Professional Team Role in Quality Patient Outcomes

Nurses have the responsibility to make clinical judgments and decisions. Decisions and judgment reflect how nurses come to comprehend the health issues and concerns of patients and develop effective intervention strategies. Nurse decisions and clinical judgment are required in a complex situation to improve patient quality of care. In such instances, a multi-professional team must collaborate to deliver quality healthcare to patients.

It is important to recognize that nurse judgment and decisions should be based on theoretical knowledge, best evidence, ethical perspectives, patients’ opinions, culture, and caregivers’ views. This approach results in a collaborative process that accounts for different aspects of care.

In collaboration, physicians, nurses, therapists, and pharmacists among other care providers, for instance, work together, make joint decisions and judgments to deliver holistic care to patients. Researchers have acknowledged that inter-professional collaboration is difficult and simply assembling a team of professionals to collaborate will probably not work (Gilbert, Yan, & Hoffman, 2010). Instead, an inter-professional team requires trust and role appreciation to enhance participation, communication, and effective collaboration.

For an inter-professional team to work effectively, members must recognize their scope of practice and skills (Gilbert et al., 2010). At the same time, members should also appreciate the professional capabilities of others to deliver the best quality of care to patients.

Traditionally, a team approach has worked, but inter-professional collaboration is meant to enhance outcomes of care. Nurses are encouraged to make judgments and decisions based on the best evidence.

Nurses play critical roles in enhancing collaboration through effective communication with members of an inter-professional team. Nurses have the major role of making clinical decisions, judgments and must build better relationships with other professionals.


Gilbert, H. V., Yan, J., & Hoffman, S. J. (2010). A WHO report: framework for action on interprofessional education and collaborative practice. Journal of Allied Health, 39(Suppl 1), 196-7.

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