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BACKGROUND To explore the experiences of an occupational therapist and a physical therapist working together in geriatric home rehabilitation team.

METHODS A qualitative study based on interviews and observations. The participants, one occupational therapist and one physical therapist, were individually interviewed on three occasions during a six month period. Data was also collected by observing the OT and PT when performing home visits on two occasions. All data was analyzed by using a constant comparative approach.

RESULTS The analysis showed that the teamwork was based on shared basic values in combination with the participants’ diverse focuses and work tasks. Overlaps were apparent, but were not an issue in this team due to strong professional identities, direct communication and shared responsibilities. The teamwork was much about negotiating the professional prioritizations and being open-minded towards the other’s professions. The observations also revealed that the client played an important role in the teamwork.

CONCLUSION Important facilitators for creating productive teamwork are: clarification of similarities and differences in the professions included, identification of what work tasks are shared responsibility and what tasks are included in a specific profession, directness of communication, and acknowledgement of the client as an active team member.