Evaluation of Osteopathic Medical Students’ and Physicians’ Understanding of Inter-Professional Collaboration
Jenna Mancinelli, DO, Christopher Douris DPT, Freya Tarapore DPT, Min-Kyung Jung PhD, Bhuma Krishnamachari PhD, Peter Douris PT DPT EdD, Patricia Kooyman DO

The purpose of this study was to assess medical students’ and physicians’ understanding of inter-professional collaboration (IPC). It was hypothesized that students are less likely to understand the dynamics of IPC than practitioners, and that students in pre-clinical years are as likely as students in clinical years to support IPC. An electronic survey was sent to students and alumni of the participating medical school, 299 students and 279 alumni responded. Significantly different responses between students and practitioners were observed for both understanding dynamics of and support for IPC including questions regarding how referrals are made (p = 0.007) and how electronics are used as a means of communication (p = 0.022). There were significant linear trends showing greater understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the various healthcare professionals as the years of clinical experience increased (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference between the groups of preclinical and clinical students regarding support for IPC (p = 0.31). Students have a better awareness of IPC, understanding the roles of members of the healthcare team when compared to practicing physicians. The resultsof this study may guide medical school curriculum planners to adjust existing or design new IPE programs accordingly.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/ijhs.v5n4a6