Interprofessional Rural Program in British Columbia
Pharmacy Practice Research Symposium Abstracts
2005 AFPC Conference | AFPC Pharmacy Practice Research Symposium 2005 “Interprofessional Collaboration in Pharmacy Practi | 4:30 pm
Rosemin Kassam, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of British Columbia
Background: Difficulties with recruitment and retention of qualified health care practitioners in rural communities has been a big concern in Canada. In response, an Interprofessional Rural Program of British Columbia (IRPbc) was established to expose students in the health professions to rural communities, while at the same time train future practitioners to work effectively together among professions.
Objective: To provide an overview of the IRPbc and discuss the lessons learned.
Methods: Preceptors from participating health and human services programs who were interested in participating in the IRPbc were recruited and offered a one-day orientation session. Senior year students interested in rural exposure and interprofessional collaboration were also recruited and offered a two-day orientation session. Each student had to complete the requirements of their own professional education, as well as meet expectations set by the IRPbc. Individual and group interviews with preceptors and students, along with students’ log of their experiences were used to evaluate the program.
Results: IRPbc has phased through three placement cycles: summer 2003, winter 2004 and summer 2004. To-date 62 students have participated. Some of the benefits of IRPbc have included expansion of clerkship opportunities in rural communities, increased understanding of the needs of rural communities by students, and an increase in recruitment of qualified professionals in participating rural settings. The major challenges experienced have revolved around the implementation process, and have been associated with the short implementation time frame, different program priorities, different timing and duration of student placements, and conflicts between the demands placed on students by their disciplines and the IRPbc.
Conclusion: IRPbc has provided an excellent model for implementation of interprofessional education.