Interprofessional education occurs when students from two or more professions learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes. Source: World Health Organization, 2010

Why is IPE important?

The Institute of Medicine recommends that all health professionals should be educated to deliver patient-centered care as members of an interprofessional team, emphasizing evidence-based practice and quality improvement with the goal of improving the quality of healthcare, including prevention and management of chronic disease.

What is the unifying framework for interprofessional education and collaborative practice?

The Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC), consisting of the six founding health professions education associations*, was formed in May 2011 and published the Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice which provides a formal, common definition of Interprofessional Education and Practice:

  • Competency Domain 1: Values and Ethics for Interprofessional Practice
  • Competency Domain 2: Roles and Responsibilities
  • Competency Domain 3: Interprofessional Communication
  • Competency Domain 4: Teams and Teamwork

In February 2016, IPEC published the 2016 Update of Core Competencies and added nine new national professional accreditation organizations** to the Collaborative. The 2016 Update “…reflects the changes that have occurred in the health system since the …original report…” and “…integrates explicit population health outcomes alongside individual care competencies into an expanded competency model…”

*Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP), American Dental Education Association (ADEA), Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH), and American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM)
**American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine (AACPM); American Council of Academic Physical Therapy (ACAPT); American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA);American Psychological Association (APA); Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC); Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO); Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions (ASAHP); Council on Social Work Education (CSWE); Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA)