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Perceptions of interprofessional education in the Australian Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics (ALSO) course

Walker, L., Fetherston, C. and McMurray, A. (2015) Perceptions of interprofessional education in the Australian Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics (ALSO) course. Family Medicine, 47 (6). pp. 435-444.

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METHODS: A prospective, mixed methods design was used to survey 165 ALSO course participants before the course and 6 weeks after the course (n=101). Quantitative data were analysed using the Wilcoxon signed rank test, and all P levels lower than .05 were considered significant. Qualitative data were analyzed using content analysis.

RESULTS: There were significant increases in midwives’ confidence in all four aspects of interprofessional interaction measured 6 weeks following the course. However, the doctors only reported a significant increase in one aspect, the confidence that their clinical decisions were respected by the midwives with whom they worked. The qualitative data demonstrated an appreciation of different professional approaches to clinical situations and the importance of teamwork, communication, respect, and understanding. While most participants were positive about the advantages of IPE, just under half also believed there were some disadvantages, particularly due to the variable learning needs of individual professionals.

CONCLUSIONS: Both doctors and midwives reported various benefits from IPE, and many believed that IPE assisted maternity team collaboration and communication in the workplace. However, educators need to skillfully manage IPE sessions to ensure a similar distribution of learning and that opportunities for discussion are equivalent for all individuals and professional groups.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Health Professions
Publisher: STFM
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