Lightning Talk

Scaling an Interprofessional Palliative Care Curriculum for Sustainability

Wednesday, September 14, 2022, 1:15 pm - 2:15 pm CDT
palliative care

There is a large gap between the number of healthcare professionals with specialty palliative care training and the number required to meet the needs of the growing population of individuals with serious illness or multiple chronic conditions, which results in disparities in palliative care access across populations and settings. The unpredictable course of COVID-19 has placed further strain on and highlighted shortages of palliative care providers, and has emphasized the need to have upstream conversations about patients’ values, goals, and preferences. Providing training in primary palliative care to all healthcare workers—the core skills and knowledge needed to deliver care for the seriously ill in any setting—is one solution to this workforce challenge.
Palliative care’s focus on a team-based approach and the importance of collaborative partnerships within and between all care providers underscores the value of interprofessional education (IPE) as a means of filling these education and practice gaps. Although the need for primary palliative care education and competencies has been recognized across multiple disciplines, many of the existing efforts have been siloed within individual disciplines.
This Lightening Talk will describe how we scaled a pilot, faculty-driven palliative care IPE program to a university-wide IPE curricular offering sponsored by the Jefferson Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education (JCIPE). Program evaluation data obtained from the pilot informed refinement of and revisions to the curriculum for scaled implementation. Aligned with the National Consensus Project’s Clinical Practice Guidelines for Quality Palliative Care, JCIPE’s Interprofessional Palliative Care program is a semester-long hybrid curriculum that consists of asynchronous didactic modules, synchronous case-based learning, participation in interdisciplinary team rounds, shadowing palliative care providers, and student team-developed poster presentations. Both program-level and learner-specific outcomes were evaluated using pre-post surveys.