Monday, April 16, 2012

Interprofessional Education (IPE) – Learning How to Do and Teach It

Last week I had the incredible privilege of attending a workshop on interprofessional education (IPE). Although I believe that I have been inclusive of the views of other heath care professionals, this workshop opened my eyes to new possibilities for how we educate the future health care professionals in all areas.

First of all: kudos to the absolutely amazing people from the Centre (note Canadian spelling here, eh?) for Interprofessional Education at the University of Toronto.  Ivy, Mandy, Lynn and Belinda were just wonderful people to get to know (absolutely some of the friendliest people I’ve ever met).  They truly embody what the world of working together with other backgrounds can and should entail.  Their work is truly inspiring, and is all the more impressive given the limited amount of dedicated time that they have to do it.

Second, it opened my eyes to some awesome people who are already here working for my own institution (Indiana University), whom I had not yet met.  It is fascinating when people work so hard in their own arena and do not know that others with like-minded interests are sometimes literally right around the corner.

Third, it reinforced the belief that no matter what health care field one may work, it is still all about the patient!  I am reminded of this every day in my work, and this workshop cemented that even more.

Fourth, it is exciting to see that my own institution has a plan for how to embed IPE into the curricula of the medical school, the nursing school, the school of social work, the dental school, the school of optometry, the school of rehabilitation sciences, and others (we do not have a school of pharmacy).  There is much work to be done, but we are well on our way.

I was not originally scheduled to go to this, but had the privilege of attending portions of the workshop.  I am so glad that I did, even if I missed some of the sessions for patient care duties.  It has invigorated my interest in what I do in medical education.  And isn't it great to be invigorated every once in a while?

Here are two links on IPE in medical education.


  1. I love your comments! And I agree, it's great to be invigorated, especially about such an inspiring initiative that is gaining ground at so many institutions. I work with Interprofessional Education & Practice (IPEP) at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center and we are working on a longitudinal IPE curriculum that brings together our four health sciences colleges. It's always great to hear what's happening at other institutions. I look forward to hearing more about IPE developments at Indiana University.

  2. Thank you so much for your comment, Yvonne. It is so wonderful that this work is spreading. While I am not the expert by any stretch, we have "point persons" at Indiana University who have created a long-term plan for how to integrate this into the curricula of the different schools.