1.What do you feel the purpose of the IPE course is? What were the benefits and
challenges of learning together in this experience?
I feel that the purpose of the IPE course is to improve the quality of communication among health care workers, to provide better understanding of our own profession in relation to others and to improve our ability to work as a team. In addition, I think this course is important for the quality of care of the patients.
There are a lot of benefits from participating in the IPE programs including but not limited to elimination of communication breakdowns and appreciating the role of other health professionals. For instance, I knew very little about the career of a paramedic before the IPE session. My opinion was that their main function was an ambulance driver. Eventually, I had learned that paramedics are trained to examine and evaluate patients. However, throughout the course I have experienced some challenges. I have found out that some students from other programs have stereotypes about other health units or professions. During sessions some people were demonstrating disrespect to other profession. Their snobbish behavior was showing that the information was not important for them. It is very difficult to work as a team when you have a feeling that you are close to the bottom of the health care hierarchy.
2. What would you identify as professionally valuable from the IPE sessions this year, and how can you apply this learning to your future practice?
The most valuable experience I got during the IPE case study session. By reviewing respiratory case study, we discussed the patient issues raised in the simulation case and the actions of each health unit. The exchange of ideas and information between
students helped to understand whole picture of patient care as well as particular role of each ward. Also, the session about cardiac disease was interesting and useful. We were shown how each of the Allied Health Sciences deal with a cardiac patient. For example, ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction is a very dangerous type of heart attack. The cause of this condition is blocking of the arteries that supplies oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to the heart muscle. STEMI can lead to developing life-threatening arrhythmias. Paramedics are trained to detect STEMI and play a crucial role in rapid transport and treatment of STEMI patients. Prehospital identification of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) allows early cath lab activation, thereby reducing first medical contact-to-balloon time and mortality.
Medical Radiology Technologists perform Percutaneous coronary intervention. This method is used to open narrowed arteries that supply heart muscle with blood. Ultrasound Technologists can determine Stroke risk even if there are no symptoms. Prescreen for risk of Stroke shows a narrowing of the carotid arteries in the neck. This needless test helps to reduce patient’s chances of having a stroke. Case studies helped me better understand what tests I should perform in the lab for patient with respiratory disease or cardiac problem. In the future, it will help to identify what diagnostic tests should be done and understand changes in lab values related to the certain disease. Overall, the opportunity to work with students from different program moved forward in my education.
3. How could the course have been modified to enable additional interprofessional learning about, from and with each other? How would you design and structure.
As I mentioned above, I think the most helpful part of this course is working on case studies. First of all, this activity allows to imitate patient care and health care team interactions. In addition, we learn how to apply our knowledge on practice. Therefore, I would create more case study sessions. I would organize these sessions with
the human participants who could be trained to simulate and describe symptoms of different diseases. Also, I would create more scenarios for interprofessional conflict resolution.
For example, the session could be organized in this way:
1. Students are divided into groups.
2. Each group of students receive case study, discuss patient history and share information how they can contribute to the care of this patient.
3. The groups receive a scenario for conflict resolutions and perform role-play activity.
4. Discuss questions: How do I feel? How to solve this problem? How to avoid the conflict?
It is necessary to have real life scenarios. For instance, lab technologists spend time running tests and do not have a lot of interaction. Usually they can communicate with doctors, nurses and other lab workers. So, the scenario should correspond to a real workplace situation.
At the end of the day, IPE course provides opportunities for health care workers to understand their role in diagnostic decision making and work together as a team in improving patient outcomes.