An interprofessional education (IPE) clinic in the Emergency Department (ED) setting was predicted to simultaneously benefit health professions learners and patients seeking care. The purpose of this study was to describe the perceptions of health professions students (HPS) and patients participating in this experience.
In 2015 Doctor of Medicine (MD), Advanced-Practice Nursing (NP), Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and the Physician Assistant faculty and students began collaborating in patient care in an IPE clinic in the ED. In 2017, Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students and faculty were requested to join the interprofessional team due to many lower acuity patients presenting with primary musculoskeletal complaints. Follow phone calls with a standardized script were completed to gather patient perspectives of their care for clinic quality improvement. Data from the follow up calls were recorded in a Qualtrics Survey between January 2017 and June 2019. Utilizing the Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC) Core Competencies as a framework, a Qualtrics survey was designed for HPS to assess other students and faculty in collaborative patient care. The survey was disseminated to all HPS participating in the clinic from January to June 2019. Both surveys were analyzed for descriptive and clinical significance data.
Of the 442 patients called, 151 answered and responded to the survey. 75% of the patients rated their overall care as Òvery goodÓ, the highest rating on the 5-point Likert scale. MD students and faculty were involved in all patient encounters, while involvement of other health care student/ faculty groups varied. Patients that had DPT students and faculty involved with their care rated their overall care significantly higher (p=0.035) relative to the other HPS student and faculty groups. 67 HPS completed the survey, rating other students and faculty on the four IPEC core competencies for a response rate of 28%. NP students rated both students and faculty across all competencies lowest (worse) while MD students rated all competencies highest (better) when compared to other HPS groups. The interprofessional communication core competency was the highest ranked core competency across all HPS groups. Mean scores across all core competencies were higher when DPT students and faculty were part of the clinic experience with significantly higher ratings in student (p=0.006) and faculty (p=0.017) roles and responsibilities and student teams/teamwork (p=0.019) core competencies.
Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme:
The IPE clinic described in this study was designed to be a meaningful IPE experience that would simultaneously place the patient at the center of the health care team with multiple HPS and providers in the ED setting. Only one study published in Sweden includes physical therapy students as part of a clinical IPE experience in the ED. In this study, both HPS and patients rated their experiences in this clinic highly. Their experiences were rated significantly higher when DPT students and faculty were a part of the collaborative care experience, demonstrating the unique perspective and skillset physical therapy brings to the interprofessional team to improve the health care experience for patients and IPE experience for other HPS.