Academic journal article American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education

An Interprofessional Education Panel on Development, Implementation, and Assessment Strategies

Academic journal article American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education

An Interprofessional Education Panel on Development, Implementation, and Assessment Strategies

Article excerpt


The Institute of Medicine (IOM) released several reports on health care services and the education of professionals in the United States. The reports emphasize the need for substantial change in the delivery of services and education consistent with the needed redesign of the health care system. (1,2)--In 2010, 2 reports were released that sparked international discussion about needed reforms in health education and a call for producing health professionals who are ready to provide patient-centered, interprofessional, team-based care. The first report, from a global, independent commission on health professional education, called for transformational change in health professions education. (3) The commission set forth the case for integrating a systems approach into educational reforms in medicine as well as in health care as a whole. The second report, from the World Health Organization (WHO), presented a framework for implementing IPE and collaborative practice. (4) This report defined IPE as students from 2 or more professions learning about, from, and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes. The report also explained how changes in health education can facilitate redesigning the health care system. While efforts to promote IPE have existed for more than 20 years, these reports prompted renewed vigor and motivation for major changes in health professions education worldwide.

In 2011, the Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC) published the Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice, based on work by WHO and sponsored by professional education associations in medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry, and public health. (5) The report provided operational definitions for interprofessional collaborative practice, interprofessional teamwork, and interprofessional team-based care. It outlined 4 competency domains: (1) values/ethics of interprofessional practice; (2) roles and responsibilities; (3) interprofessional communication; and (4) teams and teamwork. It also included a set of 38 competency statements describing knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary for demonstrating interprofessionalism. The IPEC report urged educators to prepare health professions students to work together, with a common goal of building a safer and better patient-centered, population-oriented health care system.

When the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) published a draft of the new 2016 Standards, (6) the WHO definition for IPE and the 4 IPEC domains were adopted into the mandate for integrating interprofessional collaborative practice into pharmacy curricula. As reform develops, the scope of pharmacy practice changes, and new educational standards are implemented, future pharmacy practice models will likely include interprofessional teams to improve patient outcomes. Consequently, pharmacy programs nationwide are embarking on dynamic changes to integrate IPE throughout the didactic and experiential portions of the curriculum.

Despite this mandate, no published evidence exists of an institution fully implementing a curriculum that builds student competency in interprofessional teamwork and collaborative practice from the first to the last year of education. Many curricula now have experience with IPE activities, simulations, courses, and experiences, but no one has published evidence for success in implementing a well-designed, deliberate, and longitudinal curriculum for IPE that assures all students reach stated outcomes.

The main purpose of this article is to provide colleges and schools of pharmacy with strategies for developing and successfully implementing an IPE curriculum. Through description of practical experiences, this primer emphasizes essential tools for IPE interventions, identifies potential challenges, and discusses effective assessment tools for educational outcomes. Development of this primer resulted from collaboration among members of a panel that presented a platform on innovative IPE curriculum and collaborative practice models to the Curriculum Special Interest Group (SIG) at the 2013 American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) Annual Meeting in Chicago. …

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