A father is the living donor for his 21 year old son. During testing, the medical team finds out the man is not the son’s biological father. What is the proper chain of events for the healthcare team? Our nursing students have the opportunity to work on this case study during their senior year class, Transforming Health Care for the Future. This mandatory class puts nursing students in the same room as their peers from nine different health science disciplines with the objective of gaining an understanding of the complexities of the health care system through experiential activities conducted in interprofessional teams.
“We’re fostering readiness for the workplace when we’re bringing our students together. When health professions can learn together early on, they are more prepared to work together in clinical settings, acute settings, and policy settings.”
- Sara Goldsby, Transforming Healthcare facilitator
College of Nursing Associate Professor, Dr. Beverly Baliko serves as one of the core faculty members solidly invested in ensuring students gain interprofessional education opportunities while at South Carolina. Research has shown optimal patient results are correlated to team communication and interprofessional collaboration is a key strategy for health care reform. When our nurses graduate and enter the workforce, they interact with pharmacists, physicians, dietitians, etc every day. Our students need to know the roles and responsibilities of fellow healthcare staff and be able to practice with other disciplines collaboratively. Baliko believes providing experiential environments for students is a safe and rewarding best practice for building strong nurses. Baliko shared that through interprofessional education opportunities, she watches students integrate collaboration into their everyday practice. Student Julia Brown stated, “I have gotten to know and work with other students and faculty of disciplines outside of my own. It has helped me to think in creative ways, while expanding my network of colleagues.”
Dr. Baliko was recently inducted into the National Academies of Practice for her dedication to interprofessional education. The NAP is a non-profit organization that works to advise governmental bodies on our healthcare system. Distinguished practitioners and scholars are elected by their peers from fourteen different health professions to join the only interprofessional group of healthcare practitioners and scholars dedicated to supporting affordable, accessible, coordinated quality healthcare for all. Baliko is looking forward to collaborating with her fellow Academies on healthcare and furthering the importance of interprofessional education.