Interprofessional Education to Improve Patient Health Outcomes
Saturday, April 25, 2015: 3:45 PM-5:00 PM
Holiday 5 (Hilton Baltimore)
Organizer: Janet Purath, PhD, APRN, BC, College of Nursing, Washington State University, Spokane, WA
Background: The AACN in 2006 noted that healthcare professionals must function in highly collaborative teams in order to provide safe, timely, effective, and patient-centered care. Hence it is crucial that DNP students work within interprofessional teams as part of their early education and training. Because the integration of interprofessional education must be accomplished without adding extensive new content to already overfull curricula, collaborations that incorporate learning activities within each professional program’s curriculum are particularly valuable. These critical needs led our faculty to develop and implement a series of structured interprofessional experiences within the DNP curriculum. We introduced interprofessional practice to our DNP students in their first clinical course. Over the course of two semesters, students from five healthcare disciplines participated in teams. They first learned team-building and communication skills within the framework of TeamSTEPPS®, an evidence-based teamwork system. They then practiced those skills in a series of simulated clinical encounters using standardized patients with multiple chronic conditions and an unfolding case study. In the project’s final phase, the student teams provided care to patients with multiple chronic conditions in clinic and community-based sites. To evaluate program success, we embedded evaluation into each phase of the project.
Methods: This symposium:
- Describes the need for interprofessional health education, challenges of implementation, and steps to engage partners in developing a case-based interprofessional education program.
- Identifies key components of an interprofessional education program focused on case-based management of persons with multiple chronic conditions.
- Describes the development, implementation, and evaluation of a structured interprofessional education program that provides students from pharmacy, nursing, medicine, nutrition, and social work opportunities to care for simulated patients with multiple chronic conditions.
- Presents project expansion beyond standardized patients to include interprofessional home and clinic visits with persons who have multiple chronic conditions.
- Discusses the framework of an interprofessional learning continuum in which students achieve core competencies by moving from exposure to immersion to competence.
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