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Health students' experiences of the process of interprofessional education: a pilot project.

J Interprof Care; : 1-10, 2019 Feb 19.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30777493
The need for interprofessional education (IPE) in health science disciplines is a current global trend. However, despite international support and demand, IPE is still new to many health professions curricula in South Africa. Furthermore, while ample existing academic literature addresses commonly encountered barriers to IPE, there is still a need to investigate the dynamics and challenges associated with the process of implementing IPE at universities. IPE is not yet part of the formal curriculum at a faculty of health sciences at a South African Higher Education Institute, so a pilot project was conducted to investigate the experiences of an IPE process by students from different health professions toward informing the planning and implementation of IPE in the formal curriculum. To this effect, a multi-layered IPE project was piloted across pharmacy, nursing, social work, psychology, dietetics, and human movement sciences within this Faculty of Health Sciences. The aim of this research was to determine the dynamics between the different health professions by exploring and describing the students' experiences of the IPE process. Theoretical case studies were presented to third-year students, who were grouped into interprofessional teams from the six different health professions at the Higher Education Institute's health sciences faculty. Data were gathered from reflective journals over a five-week period and a questionnaire was administered at the end of the project. Data were analysed and evaluated based on the interprofessional learning domains listed in the IPE framework of the World Health Organization. All participating health professions students felt positive about the project and agreed that it provided them with valuable IPE experiences. However, their long-term participation and commitment presented difficulty in an already demanding curriculum. The interprofessional dynamics were influenced by the relevance of the scenarios presented in the case studies to the different professions, the students' personalities and their previous experiences. Although the nursing students took initial leadership, contributions from the other professions became more prominent as the case studies unfolded. The findings indicated that the inclusion of different health professions in an interprofessional team should be guided by the specific scenarios incorporated to simulate interprofessional cooperation. The availability of the students and their scope of practice at third-year level should also be taken into account.