by Dr Maria Cecilia Mosquera, IPL Academic Coordinator
Graduates of health professions programmes, such as those from medical schools, will embark upon a future of service for the wellbeing of patients and the community. They will join a workforce comprised of members of a wide variety of health professions, all of whom must work together for the optimal care of the patient. Furthermore, and aligning with the “One Health” concept which emphasizes the relationship between the health of humans and animals within a healthy, sustainable environment our multidisciplinary team also includes members from sectors beyond the clinical team, all of whom contribute towards the health of patients and the greater community.
Recognizing that the process of learning to work professionally, effectively, and collaboratively in teams must begin as a student, the Medical School is working to continue to enhance and expand its Interprofessional Education (IPE) and Interprofessional Learning (IPL) activities in order to foster in its students’ excellence in collaborative multidisciplinary patient care and prepare a “collaborative practice-ready health workforce.” According to the World Health Organization (WHO), IPE occurs when “two or more professions learn about, from, and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes.” IPE helps create interprofessional health care teams that “understand how to optimize the skills of their members, share case management and provide better health services to patients and the community”. Considering this, the Medical School is working both to expand opportunities for its students to learn “about,” “from,” and “with” trainees and professionals of other programmes and to expand and nurture the capacity of its faculty to guide interdisciplinary groups.
Notably, the Medical School continues to grow in its variety of health professions training programmes, and also houses faculty with a breath of experiences who come from all aspects of the clinical and non-clinical realms. Additionally, the recently established state-of-the-art UNIC Medical Centre provides a noteworthy opportunity for the development of interdisciplinary clinical activities for students while experiencing the delivery of the highest quality care. What’s more, the Medical School already works across a series of fronts, including education, research, and community efforts, with a variety of clinical and non-clinical training programmes in the larger University of Nicosia setting and has a multitude of external partners in all sectors of society within and beyond Cyprus.
All of this presents exciting opportunities for the creation of innovative multi-disciplinary IPL activities for and with our students, programmes, and partners, with IPL activities currently being explored along fronts such as Culinary Medicine, Lifestyle Medicine, Risk Communication and Emergency Preparedness and Response.
If you are interested in learning more about IPL at the Medical School, have ideas for IPL activities, or would like to collaborate in the development of IPL activities, please contact Dr Maria Cecilia Mosquera, IPL Academic Coordinator at [email protected].