A mock health care clinic held last month brought together students from different health programs to work as teams and gain insight into interprofessional competencies.
A spinoff from previous mock clinics with nursing students, the simulation event is the result of a collaborative effort of Laura Nicholson, director of the Nursing Simulation Centre (NSC); Raya Gal, practicum skills coordinator in Nursing; and Loriann Hynes, professor and athletic therapy coordinator in Kinesiology.
“Interprofessional education has a real impact on health care,” said Nicholson. “What leads to errors in patient care is when practitioners don’t know how to talk to each other.”
For this exercise, students were split into mixed teams that were tasked with assessing a “patient” and deciding who would lead the care. The goal was for students to approach the patient as a team, work together to collect the patient’s history, seek more information if needed, and determine whether that information should be outsourced to a different practitioner.
“We’ve done nursing simulations in the past, but the focus was very different for this one as it’s about interprofessional competencies and team communication,” said Nicholson.
Before the mock clinic, participants completed a ‘pre-test’ to give organizers a baseline of students’ understanding about the other profession. Following the event, students completed a ‘post-test’ so organizers could compare the data. They also filled out a survey to offer subjective data on whether the event was useful, and how the experience may inform their future practices.
“Those who came found it overwhelmingly helpful and they saw value in competencies,” said Nicholson.
The coordinating team hopes to present more interprofessional mock clinic events in the future.