Health sciences schools bring interprofessional education in focus

Students from the UMKC health sciences schools on the Hospital Hill campus participated in joint interprofessional education learning activities on Sept. 13 throughout the School of Medicine and Health Sciences Building.
Students from the UMKC health sciences schools on the Hospital Hill campus participated in joint interprofessional education learning activities on Sept. 13 at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences Building.

UMKC will take center stage at the Kauffman Foundation Center on Dec. 2 with a seminar on how its health sciences schools are working together to promote and implement interprofessional education.

Former School of Medicine Dean Betty Drees, M.D., and School of Pharmacy Dean Russ Melchert, Ph.D., collaborated to bring about the seminar and provide a look at how the schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing and health studies, and pharmacy are working to promote interprofessional education in the areas of student research, student-led social activities, global health initiatives, curriculum and assessment, and diversity. As part of the program, faculty members will display work in those areas and share information about upcoming activities across the health sciences campus, said Stefanie Ellison, M.D., School of Medicine associate dean for curriculum.

“Developing a culture of interprofessional practice and collaboration is a goal on this health professions campus in order to provide safe and high quality care for patients in Kansas City,” Ellison said.

Ellison and the School of Medicine took part in organizing the first joint curricular activity among the health sciences schools last February. A second interprofessional activity, Dr. Hotspot and the Ethical Delivery of Care, took place on September 13 with classes held throughout the School of Medicine and the Health Sciences Building.

The activity, developed jointly by the health science schools on the Hospital Hill campus, included more than 465 students and nearly 50 faculty and student facilitators. The overall focus of the September class was on exploring values and ethics in team-based delivery of care, Ellison said. The class allowed students to work on an original case focusing on chronic disease and to understand and manage their patient’s social determinants of health as they answered questions and created a plan for their patient.

Classes were based on the small group learning sessions of student teams that began working together at the February 2014 activity. Those interprofessional students groups, called IMPACTs (Interprofessional Medical Patient Advocacy and Collaborative Teams), worked together before the class to identify the resources needed for their own patient population and to prepare for discussion on the day of the event a list of resources necessary for their practice area. Students were also asked to watch a video by Dr. Atul Gwande, a nationally recognized leader in health reform also known as Dr. Hotspot, to prepare for the event.

“There are more curriculum activities in IPE planned for our students in the upcoming years,” Ellison said.