The delivery of quality care is best done by a group of practitioners who can effectively communicate and utilize the ‘team decision making approach’ to solve patient/client/person care issues. Organizations such as the WHO advise us that “after almost 50 years of inquiry, there is now sufficient evidence to indicate that interprofessional education enables effective collaborative practice which in turn optimizes health-services, strengthens health systems and improves health outcomes” (2010, p18). The need to implement interprofessional team based approaches to patient care is important. What is also essential is the need to provide interprofessional learning opportunities for today’s health care student who will be practicing in teams in an ever changing health care delivery system of tomorrow.
Currently the majority of interprofessional activities that students are exposed to are in didactic settings. Although most health professionals spend more than half of their education in a clinical setting, very little opportunity [predominately because of logistics] exists for students to develop interprofessional skills in clinical practice. Thomas Jefferson University is not immune to this challenge. While we have been successful in bringing medical and nursing students together to engage in clinical rounding, we have not been able to engage many of the other members of the health care team because they are simply not physically on the clinical unit.
Shaffer, MSN, RN, CNE, Kathryn and Speakman, EdD, RN, ANEF, FNAP, Elizabeth
"Using Technology to Enhance Interprofessional Collaborative Practice: Creating Virtual Clinical Opportunities by Implementing Google Doc and Google Hangout in Clinical Rounding,"
Collaborative Healthcare: Interprofessional Practice, Education and Evaluation (JCIPE):
1, Article 2.
Available at: http://jdc.jefferson.edu/jcipe/vol5/iss1/2