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Value of Interprofessional Education: The VA Quality Scholars Program.
Godwin KM, Narayanan A, Arredondo K, Miltner RS, Bowen ME, Gilman S, Shirks A, Eng JA, Naik AD, Hysong SJ. Value of Interprofessional Education: The VA Quality Scholars Program. Journal for healthcare quality : official publication of the National Association for Healthcare Quality. 2021 Sep 1; 43(5):304-311.
Interprofessional collaboration (IPC) has been shown to improve healthcare quality and patient safety; however, formal interprofessional education (IPE) training is insufficient. The VA Quality Scholars (VAQS) program exists to develop interprofessional leaders and scholars in healthcare improvement. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of integrating interprofessional healthcare learners and designing an interprofessional curriculum for the national VAQS program. VAQS alumni (graduates from 2001 to 2017) across eight national sites (n = 102 [53.1%]) completed a web-based survey to assess alumni perceptions of IPC skill development during the program and IPC skill utilization in their careers. Alumni from 2009 and earlier were physicians; alumni after 2009 came from diverse health professional backgrounds. Overall, IPC and teamwork was identified as the most used skill (n = 82, 70%) during their career. When comparing the pre-IPE period and the post-IPE period, post-IPE alumni identified IPC and teamwork as the area of greatest skill development (n = 38). Integrating interprofessional trainees and robust IPE curricula enhanced an established and successful quality improvement (QI) training program. VAQS alumni endorsed the importance of IPC skills during their careers. The VAQS program is an example of how health professionals can successfully learn IPC skills in healthcare QI.