Different roles, same goal: students learn about interprofessional practice in a clinical setting
The Shriners Hospitals for Children-Canada has developed an innovative Interprofessional Education Program to help tomorrow's healthcare professionals gain the skills and knowledge they need to work effectively in teams to provide efficient, collaborative and family-centred care. Undergraduate students in nursing, physiotherapy and occupational therapy participated in group discussions, seminars by staff members and group presentations. Students reported increased understanding of their own and others' roles and a more holistic view of patients and families, and demonstrated their ability to work in teams to create collaborative care plans. Facilitating factors were a strong existing interprofessional team, administrative buy-in and support, consistent clinical nurse specialist involvement and strong, enthusiastic students. Challenges included logistics, time taken away from students' regular clinical time, time required of staff for program planning and implementation, and the difficulty of evaluating effects on patient care. The program shows promise as a way of introducing students to interprofessional practice and giving them a chance to practise their newly acquired skills in a clinical setting. It also has the potential to enhance staff awareness of interprofessional issues and facilitate staff development.
PubMed URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20383078