Interprofessional Collaborative Practice and Learning
ACT Health is committed to promoting and embedding interprofessional collaborative practice, learning and collaborative culture within the organisation. This is achieved through a range of activities for example interprofessional quality improvement, research and learning activities.
ACT Health has identifed collaboration as one of their core values: Care, Excellence, Collaboration and Integrity. In this context Collaboration is defined as "Actively communicate to achieve the best results by giving time, attention and effort to others. Respect and acknowledge everyone’s input, skills and experience by working together and contributing to solutions. Share knowledge and resources willingly with your colleagues".
As part of their ongoing commitment The ACT Health has had a research partnership with the support of an Arc Linkage grant 2007-2010 “An action research project to strengthen interprofessional learning and practice across the ACT Health System. This Interprofessional Learning Project was able to positively influence both health care delivery and the education of our current and future health professionals.
What is Interprofessional Practice and Learning?
Interprofessional collaborative practice: “ when multiple health workers from different professional backgrounds work together with patient, families, carers and communities to deliver the highest quality care” Elements of collaborative include respect, trust, shared decision making and partnerships. (World Health Organisation, 2010).
Interprofessional learning: “when two or more health professionals learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes (World Health Organisation, 2010).
Interprofessional competency domains: identify the knowledge skills, attitudes and values that shape the judgments essential for interprofessional collaborative practice. These domains include: interprofessional communication, patient/client/family/community centred care, role clarification, team functioning, collaborative leadership and interprofessional conflict resolution (Canadian Interprofessional Health Collaborative 2010).
To learn more about the definitions and terminology for IPL please see:
National and International Awareness
There has been growing awareness and recognition that interprofessional collaborative practice strengthens health systems and improves health outcomes. Interprofessional education is a necessary step in preparing a “collaborative practice-ready” health force. A recent National Audit (2012) has been conducted through the project Curriculum Renewal for Interprofessional Health Education funded by Health Workforce Australia. The final report presents an analysis of pre-registration interprofessional education as this was occurring within university provided health professional education in Australia during 2011. The ‘national audit’ study is the “first attempt within Australia and, we believe globally, to represent the kinds of aims (competencies, capabilities and learning outcomes) and activities (teaching and learning, assessment and evaluation) of Australian interprofessional education and health professionals need to collaboration practices to deliver coordinated, safe, effective and efficient health care”.
There has also been work on developing interprofessional competency frameworks to support a clear understanding of the skills, knowledge and attitudes required for a health professional. The Canadian Interprofessional Health Collaborative published a national framework in 2010 which is currently being reviewed through a Delphi study to build this to the International Interprofessional Competency Framework.
Curriculum Renewal for Interprofessional Health Education Project link to reports and updates: www.ipehealth.edu.au/portal/
The World Health Organisation has recently published a vital document for advancing the cause of Interprofessional Collaborative Practice.
Framework for Action on Interprofessional Education & Collaborative Practice
In support of this global framework the participants of the 'All Together Better Health 5' international interprofessional conference held in Sydney, April 2010, endorsed the "Sydney Interprofessional Declaration".
ACT Health Policy for Interprofessional Learning, Education and Practice
To further advance the implementation of interprofessional collaborative practice across ACT Health, the policy (endorsed by Portfolio Executive in 2008) maps out ways in which you can support interprofessional collaborative practice within your workplace setting.
For further information contact Ned Jelbart at Ned.Jelbart@act.gov.au or by phone (02) 6205 0893.