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Sample Paper on Interprofessional Education


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Interprofessional Education (IPE) is a program that aims to make varied health professionals study together with the purpose of helping them to learn to cooperate with each other as they care for patients. Examples of professionals in the health sector are doctors, counselors, nurses, radiographers, dentists, physiotherapists, and pharmacists. Enhancing cooperation between these professionals leads to better health care (Zwarenstein et al., 1999).

The Effectiveness of IPE

As much as most scholars agree that IPE boosts collaboration among the professionals, some are convinced that IPE has no effect on their performance. A study based on EPOC concluded there was no correlation between IPE and the health workers’ partnership at work. In addition, the study indicated there was no tangible proof from either qualitative and quantitative analysis to qualify the conclusion by some scholars about IPE enhancing the quality of health care provided (Zwarenstein et al., 1999). A contradicting study on the same subject showed significant results. Students produced better results by combining forces and even ended up learning a lot more from each other as they treated the patients (Greene, Cavell, & Jackson, 1996).

The Attitude of Professionals towards IPE

According to Curran, Sharpe, Flynn & Button (2010), professionals have a positive attitude towards working together and IPE. Most of them have expressed contentment with the courses covered by the program. The courses taught were scientific theory, communication and ethics among others (Almås & Barr, 2008). It was more appealing for students to take IPE as a common course and attend those classes together than be taught disjointedly. The most interesting sections of the program were the group discussions and the simulated patients care (Curran et al., 2010). One of the most successful studies done in IPE combined medical students and pharmaceutical students. In this study, the students were taught the same courses at the same time. They worked together for two and a half hours as part of the program. The students reported to have learnt a lot from one another and the program. They proposed that time be increased so that in future, the joint patient care takes more than two and a half hours. Most students referred to the experience as “ beneficial ” (Greene et al., 1996). For the IPE program to keep being useful, students recommended scheduling of some IPE classes in the evening to get time for additional session.

The studies have provided future researchers a foundation on which they can base their arguments. Currently, more scholars support the IPE program; hence, governments and individual colleges are embracing it. It is paramount that health professionals work harmoniously as they take care of patients. This is because a patient’s full recovery is likely to entail interactions with more than one health officer. The doctor will check the patient and prescribe the medicine, the nurse picks onto the doctor’s prescriptions for cure, and the pharmacist provides the prescribed drugs. Due to existence of such collaboration, IPE is important. If the health professionals agree to pool their intellectual resources together and support one another, taking care of patients would be more efficient and effective.






Almås, S. H., & Barr, H. (2008). Common curricula in Norway: differential implementation and differential outcomes in undergraduate health and social care education. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 22(December), 650–657. doi:10.1080/13561820802380050

Curran, V. R., Sharpe, D., Flynn, K., & Button, P. (2010). A longitudinal study of the effect of an interprofessional education curriculum on student satisfaction and attitudes towards interprofessional teamwork and education. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 24(January), 41–52. doi:10.3109/13561820903011927

Greene, R. J., Cavell, G. F., & Jackson, S. H. D. (1996). Interprofessional clinical education of medical and pharmacy students. Medical Education, 30, 129–133.

Zwarenstein, M., Atkins, J., Barr, H., Hammick, M., Koppel, I., & Reeves, S. (1999). A systematic review of interprofessional education. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 13(4), 417–424.



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