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Health Professions Educators, HRSA, Foundations Announce Competencies for Interprofessional Education

by Rodney Tanaka

May 11, 2011

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Mary Wakefield, PhD, RN, administrator, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), joined leaders from a collaborative of six health professions associations, and representatives from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the ABIM Foundation to announce the release of core competencies for interprofessional education in the health professions, and action strategies to implement the new competencies.

The Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC) is composed of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP), the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the American Dental Education Association, the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, and the Association of Schools of Public Health.

A live teleconference took place on Tuesday, May 10, 2011.

Western University of Health Sciences College of Pharmacy Dean Daniel Robinson, PharmD, and WesternU Director of the Interprofessional Education Program Susan Mackintosh, DO, MPH, participated in this collaborative.

WesternU began its Interprofessional Education (IPE) curriculum in 2010, bringing together about 850 first-year students for three case studies and grand rounds. The goal of IPE is for graduates to demonstrate an understanding of each other’s roles as health professionals and to provide and promote a team approach to patient care and health care management, leading to improved patient care.

The collaborative developed competencies in integrated patient care that can be applied in practice and academic settings, Dr. Mackintosh said.

“It was a rewarding experience with professionals who care about improving patient care,” she said.

Dean Robinson said he was very happy and honored to represent WesternU and pharmacy education on the panel.

“This was truly a collaborative effort that brought together educators from six health professions,” he said. “It is our hope that the competencies are broad enough that they will be adopted by all health professions.”

The competencies fall into four domains: values and ethics; roles and responsibilities; communication; and teams and teamwork.

“It is also noteworthy that Western University of Health Sciences had two members on this panel representing pharmacy and osteopathic medicine,” Dean Robinson said. “I think this speaks volumes to the national visibility that WesternU has achieved in the world of interprofessional education.”

The two reports  containing the new competencies and action plan are available here: Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice and Team-Based Competencies, Building a Shared Foundation for Education and Clinical Practice.


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