Learning Together: Interprofessional Education at the University of New England

David J. Mokler, PhD; Shelley Cohen Konrad, PhD, LCSW; Kris Hall, MFA; Kira Rodriguez, MHS; Sue St. Pierre, DO; Victoria S. Thieme, DO; and Jenifer Van Deusen, MEd
Notes and Affiliations
Notes and Affiliations

Received: September 17, 2019

Accepted: October 14, 2019

Published: August 1, 2020

J Osteopath Med; 120(8): 509-515

Context: Patient care delivered by well-functioning teams provides integrated and cohesive responses to the patients’ needs and is considered more effective than care delivered by independent health professionals. The University of New England (UNE) College of Osteopathic Medicine integrates interprofessional education (IPE) curriculum into each year of its program. The UNE Center for Excellence in Collaborative Education coordinates strategically planned interprofessional learning opportunities.

Objectives: To assess the implementation of interprofessional competencies and learning outcomes using the Interprofessional Team Immersion (IPTI) at UNE.

Methods: A team of students from various health profession programs worked on a simulated case with trained actors to learn about the roles and responsibilities of their professions in the optional IPTI. Pre- and postsurveys used the Interprofessional Core Competencies Assessment Scale (ICCAS) and the Interprofessional Socialization and Valuing Scale (ISVS) to evaluate student outcomes.

Results: Fifty-five students from various health profession programs at UNE participated in the IPTI activity in February/March 2018. Forty-four students (80%) responded to the surveys, and 43 (78%) completed both surveys. The mean (SD) total ICCAS score increased from presurvey (122 [27]) to postsurvey (127 [26]) (P=.018). The ISVS mean total scores increased from 48.3 presurvey to 57.9 postsurvey (P<.0001).

Conclusions: The significant differences in the ICCAS and the ISVS scores indicate that the IPTI changed students’ attitudes toward IPE and future collaborative practice. Interprofessional learning at UNE is a valuable experience for both students and faculty. UNE College of Osteopathic Medicine continues to develop IPE activities for all 4 years of its programming.

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