Student Poster

Medicine in Real Life: Interprofessional Education for Medical and Social Work Students

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Social Work

Social workers are integral healthcare team members and are often overlooked for interprofessional education (IPE) with medical students. At the time of project development, the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) did not offer a medicine/social work (SW) IPE. An interdisciplinary team including 1 SW professor, 1 SW student, and 6 MCW students identified this as an area for curricular improvement.

Our team conducted a needs assessment by interviewing various stakeholders (n=48). From these interviews, we learned that students would prefer a human-centered approach to IPEs where they could get to know their interprofessional partners to build mutual respect. Using stakeholder feedback as a guide, the authors designed a 3-part educational program. Key aspects of project design time include: longitudinal meetings, a simulated patient encounter, immediately actionable facilitator feedback, and time designated for informal interaction among participants.

Program success was evaluated using a validated pre/post participation survey (ICCAS). Results demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in student efficacy across all 4 IPE competencies for both MD and SW students. Verbal feedback indicated students particularly valued time to informally socialize and interact with a standardized patient. These results prompted inclusion in the upcoming Fall 2022 curriculum.