Interprofessional Experience: Building Healthcare Teams

Purpose : The ideal healthcare team optimizes patient outcomes through collaboration and effective communication. Building the ideal healthcare team requires understanding the expertise/role of each provider. Traditional lectures fail to demonstrate the unique expertise each team member brings to a patient encounter. Furthermore, it limits the opportunity to develop essential communication. In an effort to promote collaboration, to demonstrate the expertise of nurses and physical therapists (PT), and to facilitate communication, an interprofessional (IP) simulation activity was created.Description : First year nursing (57) and PT students (44) were given an acute care case with pre-work assignments relative to medications, lab values and pathology. After a brief introduction to the task, teams of 4-5 nursing and PT students reviewed the pre-work and delegated the assigned tasks in order to complete a bedside assessment and gait activity with simulated patient/family actors. PT students needed to call a physician (actor) for clarification of weight bearing status while nursing students administered the meds and completed a fall risk assessment. Nursing students reduced the number of tethers and assisted the PT students with remaining tethers during the gait activity. A debriefing session highlighted the importance of IP communication, teamwork, patient safety and the ultimate goal of improving patient outcomes. Following the activity, students responded to survey questions on a strongly disagree (1) to a strongly agree (5) scale. When asked if the activity helped with their appreciation of other health professionals, the average rating was a 4.54. In response to are such activities a good use of learning time, students responded with an average rating of 4.7. Students were asked if teamwork skills are essential to learn and if shared learning would make them better healthcare team members. The average ratings were 4.73 and 4.78 respectively. In open-ended responses about the most important lesson to take away from the experience, students shared a greater appreciation for the expertise of the other profession and the critical importance of communication and teamwork in healthcare.Summary of Use : Active learning is well supported in the literature and this type of hands-on simulation can be used to teach more than direct patient care. The pre-work activity allowed maximal interaction during the face-to-face encounter. The task required cooperative efforts between nursing and PT students to accomplish the ultimate goal.Importance to Members: IP simulation activities have great potential in healthcare education. Such activities can enhance student development and ultimately improve patient outcomes. Scheduling and coordinating IP training events can be complex, but the student feedback supports the efforts. The collaboration required from the IP faculty to create learning activities is excellent role-modeling of the communication and teamwork that this activity was designed to develop.

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  • Control #: 2020829
  • Type: Poster
  • Event/Year: CSM2015
  • Authors: Teresa Briedwell, Dana Martin, Gretchen Gregory
  • Keywords: interprofessional|education|collaboration

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