A cross-sectional survey examining the extent to which interprofessional education is used to teach nursing, pharmacy and medical students in Australian and New Zealand Universities

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Interprofessional Care, 2012, 26 (5), pp. 390 - 396
Issue Date:
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The current status of interprofessional education (IPE) in Australian and New Zealand universities is largely unexamined despite its generally acknowledged benefit. Data are also limited about the use of IPE in teaching medication safety to nursing, pharmacy and medical students. For this reason a web-based cross-sectional survey was used to gather information from Australian and New Zealand universities offering nursing, pharmacy or medical programs. Responses were received from 31 of the 43 (72%) target universities. Eighty percent of the participants indicated that they currently offer IPE experiences, but only 24% of these experiences met the accepted definition of IPE. Of the participants who offer IPE as defined by Center for the Advancement of Interprofessional Education, only 50% use it to teach medication safety. Timetabling restrictions and lack of appropriate teaching and learning resources were identified as the main barriers to implementation of IPE. All participants reported that staff development, multi-media and e-learning resources would be beneficial to IPE initiatives and the teaching of medication safety. Innovative approaches will be needed to overcome the barriers and facilitate the uptake of quality IPE more broadly. Web-based and e-learning options promise a possible way forward, particularly in the teaching of medication safety to nursing, pharmacy and medical students. © 2012 Informa UK, Ltd.
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