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Military Health System



Ineffective communication is a leading cause of preventable harm. TeamSTEPPS® (Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety) is an evidence-based teamwork system aimed at optimizing patient outcomes by improving communication and other teamwork skills among healthcare professionals. It is rooted in over 50 years of research and lessons learned from the application of teamwork principles identified in Crew Resource Management (CRM) and within High Reliability Organizations. TeamSTEPPS® serves as a foundational element for DoD staff in the delivery of safe care and has been leveraged to achieve various MHS strategic priorities, including: eliminating harm to patients, achieving high reliability and the aims of a learning organization, and promoting a culture of safety. The triangle shows the four teachable and learnable core skills of TeamSTEPPS®. Effective teams use these core skills to focus, drive for outcomes as they overcome barriers to care.

The System

TeamSTEPPS® is a systematic approach to effective communication and teamwork and utilizes three phases. The evidence shows that training alone typically has a very small impact on success. TeamSTEPPS® includes a readiness assessment, action plan, training, coaching, impact measurement of using the behaviors, and sustainment of progress. MTF staff from all ranks and roles have used TeamSTEPPS® tools and strategies to identify safety concerns.

TeamSTEPPS System with Phases

Continuing Education

Continuing education (CE) is available for physicians, dentists, nurses, pharmacists, psychologists, and administrators for various TeamSTEPPS® courses. MTF course coordinators may obtain CE through the Online Registration Center (ORC), a tool for registration as well as monitoring post-course evaluation, and disseminating CE. TeamSTEPPS® courses approved for CE and the number of hours approved per course are:

  • Train the Trainer: 13.75 hours
  • Train the Staff (Fundamentals: 3.5 hours
  • Train the Staff with Scenarios: 3.5 hours
  • Train the Staff with Simulation: 7 hours

TeamSTEPPS® Curriculum and Materials

TeamSTEPPS® consists of a collection of instructions, materials and tools to help drive a successful teamwork initiative from the initial planning to implementation through to sustainment. Several versions of the TeamSTEPPS® curriculum are available to meet the needs of diverse audiences.

  • Click here to access TeamSTEPPS® 2.0 (2014) from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
  • Click here to access the DHA Fundamentals TeamSTEPPS® (2019) curriculum and materials
  • All materials on the Patient Safety Learning Center (PSLC) are available to download, print or copy, as needed.
  • To access detailed information on ordering materials, go to Patient Safety (PS) Educational Materials Website Step-by-Step Guide.
  • The TeamSTEPPS® Fundamentals Pocket Guide (2019), Badge Cards and Posters are available to order on the PS Educational Materials website.
  • The TeamSTEPPS® pocket Guide app is under development.

Ordering TeamSTEPPS® Materials

  • All materials on the Patient Safety Learning Center may be downloaded and printed or copied as needed.
  • To access detailed information on ordering materials, go to Patient Safety (PS) Educational Materials website.
  • TeamSTEPPS® 2.0 Instructor Guides: The Patient Safety Program shipped several Instructor Guides to each MTF to be maintained in their library and to be available to all instructors. PSP will no longer ship TeamSTEPPS® 2.0 Instructor Guides for each instructor.
  • TeamSTEPPS® 2.0 Pocket Guides: There are limited number of copies available for shipment. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality developed a free TeamSTEPPS® Pocket guide app, which may be downloaded through the app store.
  • TeamSTEPPS® Fundamentals Pocket Guide (2019): Under development
  • Badge cards and posters: Available for ordering

Annual TeamSTEPPS® Conference

The National Conference is a 2-day event sponsored by the American Hospital Association. DoD PSP facilitates a 1.5 day DoD Session. DoD has participated in the Annual Conference, since 2009. The purpose of both sessions are to provide opportunities for attendees to participate in educational offerings, networking, and community building. Military, federal, and civilian healthcare professionals and teamwork champions discuss innovations, lessons learned, and mitigation of barriers and challenges toward eliminating patient harm through teamwork. For information on attending the TeamSTEPPS® Conference, contact your Service or Market TeamSTEPPS® lead.

For more information on past TeamSTEPPS® visit the PSLC:

  • 2019 Annual TeamSTEPPS® Conference
  • 2018 Annual TeamSTEPPS® Conference

The Annual TeamSTEPPS® Conference was not held in 2020 and 2021 due to the coronavirus.

Additional Resources

Resource Contact or Access Information
General Patient Safety Program information Email:
Continuing Education Credit Email:
DHA-PM 6025.13, Volume 2 Patient Safety Learning Center
Patient Safety Implementation Guide Patient Safety Learning Center


  • Briefs and huddles
  • Debriefs
  • SBAR
Patient Safety Program Toolkits and Guides
Coaching Contact MTF or Market TeamSTEPPS® Point of Contact or email DHA at:
Webinars and Learning Circles Patient Safety Learning Center
Last Updated: November 02, 2021
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