This interprofessional education collaboration experience (IPECE) in rehabilitation provided opportunities to work in an international interprofessional collaborative team while providing pro bono services in an impoverished region of Honduras. Doctor of physical therapy (DPT) students from the United States (US) joined Functional Therapy (FT) students and licensed professionals from both countries in Honduras. Is it possible for rehabilitation students from two different countries to come together to form an effective interprofessional rehabilitation team?Ethnographic methods were used in this case study to explore the culture of IPECE. Interviews were conducted with DPT students from the US and FT students from Honduras. Students from both countries believed they learned from, with, and about the other group and other professionals. Both groups of students described the importance of building trust and a collaborative environment when treating patients while working on interprofessional teams. In terms of social responsibility, DPT students became more cognizant of international health care needs while FT students increased their awareness of local rehabilitation needs. We conclude that students on IPECE in Honduras are able to form effective health care teams while they learn about, from, and with each other while providing pro bono health care outreach. We believe that students who participate in IPECE develop a clear concept of interprofessional collaboration, advocacy, and social responsibility through their exposure to interprofessional teamwork.
|Keywords:||Interprofessional Collaboration, Service Learning, Pro Bono Work|
Professor, Davenport University, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
Assistant Professor, Mayo Program in Physical Therapy, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA