Doctor of Pharmacy


Interprofessional Education

A group of IPE students gather together inside classroom
Improving Quality of Education Outside the Classroom
Interprofessional Education (IPE) allows students from different professions to partner and learn from each other.

This type of education enables effective collaboration and improves health outcomes. Once you learn how to work in an interprofessional setting, you’re ready to join the workforce as a member of a unified practice team.

This is a crucial step in the healthcare industry's journey towards moving from fragmented systems to a position of strength.
A group of IPE students stand together during their rotation at Albany Medical Center
Why Interprofessional Education?
IPE is a significant part of the healthcare professional student experience. The delivery of IPE should be an intentionally designed process with a stepwise approach to advance students from foundational knowledge in the P1 year to practical application in the P4 year that is commensurate with the experience of a new graduate pharmacist.

The integration of IPE should span across all four years of the Doctor of Pharmacy program, including both didactic and experiential aspects. To offer IPE experiences with students of other professions, external partnerships with other health professions schools are required. Pharmacy schools must demonstrate IPE with student physicians to achieve accreditation, per the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) specifications.
Interprofessional Collaborative Practice

“Interprofessional collaborative practice is key to the safe, high-quality, accessible, patient-centered care desired by all.”

Interprofessional Education Collaborative. (2016). Core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice: 2016 update. Washington, DC: Interprofessional Education Collaborative.

Preparing you for the Practice

IPE Core Competencies
Core Competencies for Collaborative Practice
A standardized set of IPE competencies exists to guide the development of programs for all healthcare professions schools in the United States.

Values and ethics – Emphasize common goal of providing high quality, patient-centered health care while demonstrating mutual respect, trust, integrity, and high standards of ethics

Roles and responsibilities – Realize students may lack an understanding of the roles and responsibilities of other health professionals

Interprofessional communication – Acknowledge hierarchy by intentionally using language to establish an equal learning environment. Create a safe and brave space wherein students feel comfortable speaking to each other and facilitators primarily listen

Teams and teamwork – Promote the benefits of interprofessional learning for teamwork and link effective team collaboration to patient care

The inclusion of IPE in national and ACPHS domains highlights its critical role in the pharmacy student experience.

National ACPE accreditation requirements include team dynamics, team education and team practice. It also involves core Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) for new pharmacy graduates, particularly in the interprofessional team member domain. The Center for the Advancement of Pharmacy Education domains cover several areas, such as learner development, problem solving, collaboration, advocacy, communication, self-awareness, leadership, innovation and professionalism. Moreover, the Pharmacists' Patient Care Process (PPCP) involves five essential steps: collect, assess, plan, implement, and follow-up, which includes monitoring the patient's progress.

Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences has laid out a strategic plan that focuses on five key areas: 

  • Academic excellence - aims to expand the range of high-quality academic offerings and encourage interdisciplinary research collaborations

  • People and culture - seeks to build strong community relationships both within and outside its walls, promotes lifelong learning and leadership, and facilitates career growth

  • Engaging with communities - emphasizing service and health promotion and fostering local, national and international partnerships

  • Financial strength and stewardship - aims to increase enrollment to maintain its financial stability

  • Quality student experiences - supports student success both inside and outside the classroom

The College also has a set of core values that guide its activities and interactions. These values include community, collaboration, respect, integrity and student-centeredness. Community involves a shared sense of purpose and identity, while collaboration breaks down silos and encourages teamwork. Respect demonstrates professional courtesy and exhibits care, concern and consideration for others. Integrity is about honesty, trust, principles, accountability and responsibility, and requires all members to behave in a way that reflects positively on themselves and the institution. Most importantly, student-centeredness involves mutual respect and positive and engaging interactions.

As per the ACPE accreditation standards, it is mandatory for all pharmacy schools to create an IPE student experience. 

Interprofessional team dynamics – All students are expected to show their competence in interprofessional team dynamics. This includes the ability to articulate the values and ethics that underpin interprofessional practice, engage in effective interprofessional communication (e.g., conflict resolution and documentation skills), and honor their interprofessional roles and responsibilities. The didactic and Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) components of the curriculum introduce, reinforce and provide opportunities for practice of interprofessional team dynamics. Competency in interprofessional team dynamics is then demonstrated in Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) practice settings. 

Interprofessional team education – The curriculum enables collaboration and quality patient care by providing students with interprofessional educational activities. These activities help students learn from and work with other healthcare team members and understand their abilities and competencies, as well as their scope of practice. Note that some activities may involve simulations, but not all. 

Interprofessional team practice – As competent healthcare team members, all students participate in providing direct patient care and engaging in shared therapeutic decision-making. They engage in experiential educational activities with prescribers/student prescribers and other healthcare team members. These activities include face-to-face interactions and are designed to improve interprofessional team effectiveness.

Dr. Brodeur and pharmacy students gather around to observe information at OLOM rotation
IPE Committee
The IPE Committee supervises the development and delivery of interprofessional education for students at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

The director of IPE chairs the committee, which comprises four additional faculty members from the Department of Pharmacy Practice and one P3 student as voting members. The PharmD program directors, the Department of Pharmacy practice chair, the associate dean for Pharmacy, and the assistant dean of Experiential Education are also invited to attend as needed. Members serve for a term of three years with no limit on renewals, which are highly encouraged to maintain consistency among external partnerships.
Committee Liasion

External:

  • Russell Sage College IPE Committee: Scleroderma and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) planning
  • AMC-ACPHS Interprofessional Education Steering Committee (IESC)

Internal:

  • Pharmacy Experiential Education Committee (PEEC)
Reporting
  • Pharmacy curriculum committee
  • Assessment committee
  • Pharmacy Experiential Education Committee (PEEC)
Programming
  • Ensure rationale, cohesive and progressive high-quality IPE student experience with limited redundancies

  • Monitor quantitative and qualitative IPE assessment data throughout P1-P4 years

  • Optimize IPE assessment tools used for unique IPE events

Faculty Support
  • Existing and new IPE program development and delivery

  • IPE facilitation skills training

ACPE Self-study
  • Data collection and analysis 

  • Narrative writing

Visibility
  • ACPHS website IPE page 

  • Work with ACPHS communications department to develop IPE stories (external partner IPE events and faculty IPE spotlights) 

  • Partner with enrollment to highlight medical student collaborative learning opportunities to prospective students 

  • Beginning and end-of-year comprehensive overview to the department of pharmacy practice 

  • Faculty IPE Preceptor of the Year award 

 

C Lynn Cabral

C. Lynn Cabral, MD
Division of Pediatric Hospital Medicine
Assistant Dean for Medical Education for Years Three and Four
Albany Medical College

Dr. Carol Lynn Cabral, MD, and Dr. Amanda Engle, PharmD, BCPS, co-chairs of the steering committee with Albany Medical Center.

The committee is responsible for creating an IPE program between AMC and ACPHS. Their objectives include developing, coordinating and facilitating the implementation of immersive learning experiences, cross-disciplinary curricular options, student organizations, and other innovative opportunities to promote IPE. They also provide faculty development to broaden perception, knowledge, skills, and attitudes regarding IPE.

To enhance team-building effectiveness and knowledge sharing opportunities, it is crucial to incorporate IPE core competencies in the curriculum. These competencies, identified in a nationwide report by six organizations representing health professional schools, aim to prepare students for integrated and high-quality care in the evolving healthcare system. The four IPE competency domains (e.g., values and ethics, roles and responsibilities, interprofessional communication, teams and teamwork) are defined by 38 sub-competencies that describe essential behaviors.

In addition, the committee is tasked with coordinating, monitoring and evaluating IPE-focused instructional and training opportunities. The committee also assesses the needs and barriers of the AMC-ACPHS community in relation to infrastructure and capacity for growth. They also cultivate collaborative relationships with IPE programs at other institutions to identify and share best practices in IPE curriculum, training, research and clinical implementation.

Interprofessional Education (IPE) Scaffolding (Adapted from Millers Pyramid)

PharmD Year IPE Experience Tier Course Types of healthcare professions students that pharmacy students collaborate with
P1 IPE health professions roles & responsibilities exercise 1 Foundations of pharmacy N/A
P2 Scleroderma 1 PTP rheumatology/oncology PT, OT, RN, Nutrition, Psych, PharmD, Public Health
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) PTP neuro PT, OT, RN, Nutrition, Psych, PharmD, Public Health
Human trafficking Integrated problem solving 1 (intro) Nursing
Intro to health care team members roles/responsibilities  Integrated problem solving 2 (basic) N/A
P3 Geriatric teaching day 2 Integrated problem solving 3 (intermediate) Medical students
Opioid and Addiction Teaching Day (OATD) 2 Integrated problem solving 4 (advanced) Medical students
Dental patient medication evaluation 3 Advanced OTC elective course Dental students
P4 Pharmacy Interprofessional Experience (PIPE) 3   Medical Students

 

Dr. Cabral works and student observe an image of a heart on screen
Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPEs)

During their APPEs, all students participate in interprofessional education. These experiences provide students with the opportunity to practice their interprofessional collaboration skills by working together with students from other health professions in real-world settings to solve patient care problems. An example of such an experience is the Pharmacy Interprofessional Experience (PIPE) at Albany Medical College. Here, pharmacy and medical students collaborate in small groups to evaluate real patients admitted to Albany Medical Center Hospital. They then develop recommendations to improve the patient's care, which can be implemented.

For more information on Pharmacy Interprofessional Experience (PIPE) please review the following materials:

Joseph T. Wayne is the PIPE Program Co-Director along with Amanda Engle, BS, PharmD, BCPS and David Butler, PharmD, BCPS, BCIDP Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacy Practice.

Joseph T. Wayne, MD MPH MACP FRCP
Professor of Internal Medicine & Pediatrics
Clerkship Director for Internal Medicine
Associate Program Director, Internal Medicine
Department of Internal Medicine

 

 

Hear From Our Students

"The most impactful learning experience I have gained from this internal medicine rotation was the interprofessional education (IPE) component. IPE was one of the strongest and most valuable aspects for both personal and professional development on this rotation. Throughout the course of the rotation, we paired up with the medical students to work on the patients newly admitted to the floor."


"It is a great learning experience to be able to work with medical students. Honestly, this type of interprofessional training will change the next generation of healthcare professionals. We will be more collaborative patient care providers and that is what the healthcare system needs."


"Working alongside medical student colleagues has left me with the most meaningful impression overall. I am now a firm believer that to effectively work together as healthcare professionals, we must learn together as effective students. This will definitely affect the way in which I practice pharmacy now having completed this interprofessional experience."


"Collaborating with a new med student each week challenged our adaptability to work with each other as interprofessional colleagues to figure out how our professions "fit" in with each other while caring for the same patients. Each week we had to find the best workflow with each other, and since everyone has a different style and approach, it was a bit jarring at times to figure out how we could each benefit each other and grow from one another."


"Through this process, I gained a more solidified sense of other’s roles and how we could use each other as a resource. We learned to adapt to each other’s professions and execute quality patient care within a multidisciplinary team. We improved our communication with each other, settled into a smooth workflow, and executed better patient care, and then started from scratch again with new partners the following week."


"Not all rotations have a strong interprofessional component or exposure to other health care professionals or students, but this rotation has definitely provided a wonderful interprofessional experience. It is crucial to have IPE experience to better understand the other professionals you work alongside with and find how we each fit into each other like puzzle pieces as the health care team taking care of our patients."


"The interprofessional aspect of this experience had the biggest impact on me. Learning to work together with medical students provided me with insight into the aspects of patient care that medical students provide versus what pharmacy students provide. Understanding how our roles differed allowed me to maximize my contributions on the team and give recommendations that showcased the value of a pharmacy student. Working with the medical students also challenged me to create interprofessional relationships centered on trust and mutual respect."


"During my experience in my inpatient internal medicine rotation, I was given the opportunity to work on an interdisciplinary team of medical students, resident physicians, student physician assistants and hospital attending physicians in an effort to build the best possible patient care plans for our patients. My focus on the medications allowed the medical students to focus on the examinations and physical aspects of the patient care, allowing me to use their assessments to guide our recommendations based on the guidelines. This experience was unlike any other experience I have had during my career as a pharmacy intern."

 

Academic Support Services

 

Questions?

Amanda Engle, BS, PharmD, BCPS
Director of Interprofessional Education
Assistant Professor
518-694-7411
amanda.engle@acphs.edu