Symposium places focus on interprofessional education

School of Medicine faculty members Brett Ferguson, D.D.S, chair of oral and maxillofacial surgery (second from left), and Mark Steele, M.D. ’80, chief medical officer and COO of Truman Medical Centers (middle), took part in a panel discussion on interprofessional education.

Faculty from the UMKC Health Sciences Campus at Hospital Hill recently attended the Fourth Annual Interprofessional Education Symposium: Building a Bridge Between Education and Practice in the Bloch Executive Hall Auditorium.

The UMKC Schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Health Studies, and Pharmacy continue to emphasize interprofessional education in curriculum through large-scale instructional activities and at clinics through team grants.

Attendees said they want to increase the infusion of team education and practice in the curriculum because it is best for patient care.

“Hospitals are the third leading cause of death, and when you say that out loud, it’s frightening,” said Karen Cox, executive vice president and COO at Children’s Mercy, a panel speaker at the event. “That’s why we have to work together. We may be different, but not that different.”

Other panel speakers included Mark Steele, chief medical officer and COO at Truman Medical Centers; Tony Huke, clinical manager and residency director at Truman Medical Centers; Brett Ferguson, chair of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Truman Medical Centers; and Felicia Menefee, chief nursing officer ambulatory care at Saint Luke’s Hospital. Mattie Schmitt, professor emerita at University of Rochester, was the keynote speaker.

Donald Bowman, a patient, provided his perspective.

“Remember that an important member of an interprofessional team is the patient,” he said. “It’s important that team members, though they are likely to change, communicate deeply and thoroughly with their colleagues and show me that they care.”