HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Several hundred health care students at Marshall University, including students at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine as well as the schools of Pharmacy and Physical Therapy and the College of Health Professions, are learning collaborative team skills through a series of interprofessional education sessions aimed at introducing them to team-based health care.
"We at Marshall University are very pleased to offer this dynamic learning opportunity to our health care students," said Dr. Kevin Y. Yingling, dean of the School of Pharmacy. "Students from different health disciplines often have little understanding of each other's roles. Exposing them to these type exercises expands their knowledge as well as gives them an understanding of the skills needed for interdisciplinary communication."
The concept of interprofessional education or common learning has become more popular in the past few years as a way to address issues in the health care system like duplication of services, lack of care coordination, and poor communication between groups of care givers ultimately leading to better health care for patients.
More than 300 students from medicine, pharmacy, nursing, physical therapy, social work, communications disorders and dietetics are attending the sessions, which have been organized by faculty and administrators from each area.
"Interprofessional education is essential for today's health care student," said Dr. Joseph I. Shapiro, dean of the School of Medicine. "Bringing students together from many different disciplines is a challenge, but our team has done a great job."
This year's program was funded in part by a $5,000 Hedrick Grant Award, which Dr. Penny Kroll, professor and chair of the School of Physical Therapy in the College of Health Professions, says helped build a very successful experience for students.
"Students have indicated that the exercises helped them realize the importance of teamwork in the delivery of patient care, helped them recognize everyone has an important part in the care of the patient and that not any one person can do everything."
The objectives for the interprofessional classes were derived from the Interprofessional Education Collaborative, which has representatives from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, American Dental Education Association, Association of American Medical Colleges and Association of Schools of Public Health.
Date Posted: Monday, February 24, 2014