Strand 5: Internationalisation & global challenges in healthcare education
The World Health Organisation (WHO 2010) support the notion that interprofessional learning (IPL) improves health care outcomes and contributes to safe, effective and high quality care. Consequently IPL is well embedded into most undergraduate health care programmes internationally, particularly in the university setting. Research studies that have explored experiences of IPL in practice (Pollard 2009; Anderson & Thorpe 2009; Burford et al 2013; Anderson et al 2014) all recognise the value of the practice arena in providing a wide range of IPL opportunities. However the development of IPL in practice is not as explicitly articulated as it is more challenging to practitioners who see development and facilitation of IPL as much more complex than uniprofessional learning. There is a need for more qualitative research to help gain an understanding of the systems and processes in place within the practice context to facilitate IPL for undergraduate students (Greenfield et al 2010; Barr 2013). The neurological practice context was chosen as the focus for this study as it is a highly specialised area with complex patients requiring care from a range of professional groups, who must work collaboratively to meet the diverse care needs of patients. This being the case it lends itself to IPL as a practice context for undergraduate students to 'learn, with, from and about each other' (Centre for Advancement of Interprofessional Education (CAIPE 2012).