Evaluation framework for a multi-site practice-based interprofessional education intervention
The interprofessional literature suggests that there is a lack of evidence of the effectiveness of interprofessional education (IPE) on patient outcomes and critiques the methodology used to determine the evidence. This paper describes and critiques a comprehensive evaluation of a practice-based IPE intervention. The evaluation was challenged by the complexity of the project such as having multiple sites with great variability in settings and participants which required a multifaceted evaluation approach. Rather than reporting evaluation findings, this paper discusses the methodological successes and challenges of the evaluation framework used. The evaluation consisted of four components: process, outcomes, context and systems evaluation. A mixed method approach was used to collect information from a variety of data sources. Each evaluation component captured distinctive but complementary aspects of the intervention, providing a more complete understanding of the intervention. However, challenges also emerged, in particular for the outcomes component. Discussion of the challenges and benefits of each evaluation component are intended to inform future evaluation designs of complex practice-based IP education interventions. Specifically, adding systems concepts into evaluation can strengthen the evidence base of the effectiveness of IP education on IP practice and patient outcomes.
PubMed URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19370447