Moving interprofessional education to a virtual platform
Vikki Park, Programme Lead/Senior Lecturer, University of Sunderland, formerly IPE Lead, Northumbria University, and CAIPE National Board Member (firstname.lastname@example.org)
COVID-19 adversely affected nurse education worldwide, impeding face-to-face delivery and driving education to virtual platforms. For interprofessional education (IPE), where students or health professionals from different professions learn with, from, and about each other (Centre for the Advancement of Interprofessional Education, 2017), the complexity increased, with large student numbers from multiple cohorts and different specialties.
The pandemic changed everyday interprofessional interactions in practice (Goldman and Xyrichis, 2020), and research confirms that when professionals interact it is advantageous to work and learn together effectively, understanding professional roles, and establishing professional identity (Park, 2019). So, to develop future interprofessional working, undergraduate health and social care programmes are well placed to introduce the core concepts of IPE and collaborative practice aligned to health and social care professional statutory and regulatory body (PSRB) requirements that are underpinned by legislation such as the Health and Social Care Act 2012. IPE presents a conduit aligning PSRB requirements with educational strategies, workplace demands, legislation, research, and evidence-based practice, bridging the liminal space between practice and theory, so IPE is needed, but delivery is complex and online conversion challenging.
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