Health professions students have limited exposure to each other during education and training, yet there are many expectations for interaction in the workplace as part of functioning healthcare teams. We reasoned that providing students an opportunity to work together in a service-learning project under faculty supervision would enhance student knowledge and appreciation of each other’s disciplines and give them a better understanding of working together. Teams of students from four disciplines (medicine, nursing, dentistry, dental hygiene) worked as volunteers with a unique population of transitional homeless families to develop individualized health and wellness plans. Results showed positive predispositions to working with each other, which were further enhanced by collaborative, inter-professional experience. Students’ confidence in working together in multidisciplinary teams and understanding of the training and expertise of other professions increased after participation, and changes were statistically significant. Inter-professional education and community service-based learning proved to be a powerful vehicle for demonstrating the value of clinical teamwork to health profession students.
Keywordsinterprofessional education, IPEC Faculty Development Conference Presentations, IPEC Fall 2018, collaborative teamwork, community service-based learning
Lark A. Ford, PhD, MA, MSN, RN, American Nurses Association
M. Norma Partida, DDS, MPH, American Dental Education Association
Anthony Infante, MD, PhD, American Medical Association
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