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Interprofessional Education



The Centre works with the Health Faculties in developing and delivering interprofessional, team-based learning activities for students. They all focus upon bringing together students from differing disciplines to learn with, from and about each other in order to enhance their ability to work in effective, collaborative teams. Each year over 3,500 students across 10 departments take at least one of interprofessional sessions coordinated by the Centre. This amounts to 35,000 hours of teaching, 90% of which is directly facilitated contact hours.

All 1st Year Dentistry, Dietetics, Medicine, Midwifery, Nursing, Pharmacy and Physiotherapy students. Promoting Patient Safety is a set of three half-day sessions that show how effective teamwork in health care delivery can have an immediate positive impact on patient safety. Students receive a lecture introducing patient safety in an interprofessional context before working as part of an interdisciplinary team on an enquiry based learning exercise to think critically and problem solve, each student taking responsibility for what their team achieves. Enquiry based learning encourages student collaboration, fosters directed learning and aids reflection on the learning process. This exercise culminates with teams of students presenting their findings.

All 1st Year Medicine and BSc Nursing students. Recognition of the Unwell Patient is a half-day session that consolidates learning of clinical skills whilst meeting key learning outcomes of person-centred care, collaborative practice, peer observation and feedback and clinical decision making. Students form teams containing Medicine and Adult and Child and Mental Health Nursing students and take part in simulated bedside scenarios in a simulated ward within a clinical skills centre, playing patient and carer. They are facilitated by clinical skills teachers from each of the academic departments.

All 2nd Year Medicine and Midwifery students. When Harm Happens is a half-day session that challenges students to reflect on their response to unexpected clinical outcomes and deliberate effective and novel ways forward from these complex situations. The experiential learning event elicits responses to an expanding range of inputs which set out facets of a clinical incident in a maternity ward. It is constructed so as to engage students with increasingly complex and systemic views on the incident - those of the different healthcare professions and patient and their family involved. Students will reflect on their own and others’ position-taking in response to the kinds of information encountered by being asked to step back from their understandings, assumptions and decisions, and to contrast these with others’. This dynamic will help students complexify their own attitude towards problematic situations, towards others with divergent views and conclusions, and towards complexity (uncertainty about causation, truth, and resolution) more generally.

All 2nd Year Dietetics, Medicine, BSc Adult Nursing and Physiotherapy and 3rd Year Physiotherapy students.

All 3rd Year Medicine and 2nd Year Dentistry, Midwifery, Nursing, Pharmacy and Physiotherapy students. Pain Assessment and Management is a half-day session that tasks students with discussing the nature and impact of pain, and work collaboratively to plan a holistic assessment and identify pharmacological and non-pharmacological strategies for management. Students are provided with preparatory learning content online to establish a base level of knowledge of pain from which to work as an interdisciplinary team on a patient case study relevant to their clinical field. On the day of the session students have a plenary lecture before engaging in group work: collaboratively to design a pain management strategy for their patient. Teams ultimately present their case study and plan to facilitators and other interdisciplinary student teams working on different patient case studies.

All 1st Year Clinical Psychology, 2nd Year Mental Health Nursing and Physiotherapy and 3rd Year Pharmacy students. Collaborative Teamwork in Mental Health is a half-day session that provides students the opportunity to work in partnership with a person with lived experience of mental health difficulties to develop the skills required for person-centred care planning. Students are provided with preparatory learning content online to maximise the affordances of working interprofessionally and time spent with patient educators. On the day of the session they receive a lecture introducing mental health care planning before undertaking self-directed group work, meeting with a patient educator and including them in a multidisciplinary team. Teams then develop a care plan for their patient educator and then reflect on their learning as different teams discuss care plans and the process of their development. The team-based, interprofessional learning allows students to effectively consider the differing roles and responsibilities in health care whilst considering the significance of collaborative leadership and how human factors can impact on team functioning.

All Final Year Medicine, Midwifery, Adult and Child Nursing and Physiotherapy students.

All Final Year Medicine, Midwifery, Adult and Child Nursing and Physiotherapy students. Full Patient Simulation is a half-day session that highlights how human factors and interprofessional team working can impact upon patient safety and how to improve effectiveness of acute care as a safe clinician. Students are provided with preparatory learning content online to maximise time spent working interprofessionally in a simulation centre. On the day of the session they participate in and observe the management of common acute medical conditions and communication scenarios as part of an interdisciplinary team in a simulated environment with human patient simulators (mannequins) and simulated patients (actors). Each scenario is designed to draw upon and test the skills and knowledge held in combination by the interdisciplinary team of students experiencing them. They are facilitated by clinicians and clinical skills teachers, monitored by technicians and enhanced with the use of health care practitioners embedded in student teams.

All Final Year Medicine, Midwifery, Nursing and Pharmacy students. Prevention of Medication Errors is a half-day session that highlights how medication errors from prescribing, dispensing or administering a drug pose a major threat to patient safety leading to serious adverse effects. Students are provided with preparatory learning content online to maximise the opportunity to learn from facilitators with experience of medication errors and the time spent working in interdisciplinary teams. On the day of the session they participate in a clasroom-based workshop of inter- and intra-team dialogue that explores the potential causes of medication errors and preventive strategies, discussing interactive e-lessons that tell the story of an error from the perspectives of (actor) clinicians involved in it.

I think this was such a useful experience. I not only learnt a lot about myself and other individuals but found out how important it is to work with other health professionals and how beneficial a multi-disciplinary team can be to enhancing patient care.

Student, Promoting Patient Safety



Department IPE Leads



Team-based practice and interprofessional learning foreground processes that draw attention to and enhance skills in communication and collaboration. Acting as a team member requires clinicians and students to acquire an interprofessional stance. Interprofessionalism has three dimensions. The first is clinical-technical content knowledge and experience. The second is interpersonal regard and emotional-affective intelligence. The third is organisational insight and strategic-tactical foresight. At King’s, all interprofessional learning and clinical simulation account for these three dimensions. From our experience and in keeping with frameworks developed internationally, we have adapted and developed a six-competency domain-based framework to shape interprofessional education provision.

Learners from differing disciplines gain insight through shared decision-making into how clinical tasks require different professionals to ensure that patients' care becomes a seamless series of interprofessional activities.

Learners gain an understanding through discussing clinical challenges of how professional roles intersect, are co-dependent, and need to be addressed on a regular basis in order to maintain a shared understanding about and complementary enactment of professional roles.

Learners come to appreciate the importance of attending to their shared practice and reflexively adapt it to emerging circumstances.

Learners learn to recognise the importance of different professionals at different times taking the lead in the care for a patient or patients, depending on their roles and experience. Learners work collaboratively to formulate and evaluate management plans, capitalising on their different backgrounds.

Learners through negotiating agreements and compromises assume a flexible attitude towards people's tasks, roles, and general contributions to patients' care.

Learners are able to reflect on and manage the emotional dimensions of their work and professional contributions to care. They participate in shared decision making and actively engage in constructively addressing disagreements and conflicts.

Interprofessionalism is achieved when one is able to contribute their unique clinical skills to patients’ care by integrating their contribution with the those of others, including those of patients and families.

Professor Rick Iedema



Study at King’s

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