An Interprofessional Learning Opportunity Affecting Student Attitudes towards Health Care
Interprofessional education is an emerging trend in health professional education. This study tested the effects of a new educational intervention with first-year health professional students on their perceptions of interprofessional education, understanding the roles of various health professions, and attitudes toward future interprofessional practice.
Methods and findings
A prospective study was carried out with 780 first-year students from 6 health professional programs at Des Moines University in 2011 and 2012. Phase I consisted of directed investigation by study subjects of their future scope of practice, pre-survey participation, and an orientation for faculty facilitators. Phase II involved an Interprofessional Education (IPE) Day with presentations, a video viewing, small group discussions on a multi-problem clinical case aimed at promoting interprofessional collaboration in a patient-centered care process, and post-survey. After this educational intervention, significant improvements (p<0.05) were observed in participants’ understanding of: IPE concepts; scopes of practice by different health care professions; and the role of IPE in improving working relationships, communication with patients and ultimate patient care outcomes.
This paradigm of an IPE intervention can be used to promote early recognition and practice of IPE during health care career training.
KeywordsInterprofessional education health professional students collaboration IPE day
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