Most health professionals haven’t played with Play-Doh, popsicle sticks, and pipe cleaners since pre-school, but they were tools they were using recently during Reimagining Health Science Education: Design-Thinking at the Interprofessional Educational (IPE) ) used to create prototypes for programs. Workshop.
Workshop – Hosted by the new Woodruff Health Science Center (WHSC) Office of Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice (IPECP); The Hatchery, Center for Innovation; and Emory University School of Medicine – was the afternoon component of Emory’s first in-person Medical Education Day since 2019. The October 24 event brought together faculty, staff, students and physicians from Emory’s three health professional schools and Emory Healthcare. 12 Interprofessional teams.
“Our goal was to bring together faculty and students from all of our schools to dream of what IPE should and will be at Emory, and we were thrilled by the interest and engagement in this workshop, which was our office’s inaugural event,” said Jody. Guest, co-director of the IPECP’s WHSC office and vice chair of the department of epidemiology at the Rollins School of Public Health.
The guest opened the workshop by introducing the office of IPECP and challenging participants to be visionary when envisioning IPE ideas for Emory. Shannon Clute, director of The Hatchery, and Ben Garrett, innovation programming and operations manager of The Hatchery, followed their introduction by providing an overview of design-thinking or human-centered design approaches.
“We find that human-centered design is widely applicable, and particularly helpful in situations where you are not starting from a place of complete clarity on the nature of the problem in question or the needs of your target audience.” Clute explains. “By putting people at the center of the process, and defining problems from their perspective, on-point solutions are more likely to be developed.”
The real fun began when the teams created their IPE program prototypes using pre-school supplies. Teams had one hour to define, brainstorm and build their IPE prototype. The teams then displayed their designs, questioned each other about their ideas and voted on four award categories – Most Rational, Sign Me Up, Most Viral and Long Shot.
A common theme emerged during the presentation phase: fostering meaningful ways of bringing health professional students, residents, faculty and practitioners together to train and develop relationships with each other.
Team views are focused on a few primary ways of learning together: share a collective physical space to train and build an interprofessional community; be actively involved in the community with interprofessional teams; Create new case-based curriculum for interprofessional student teams to work collaboratively in simulation labs; and support an easily accessible list of courses open to any student enrolled in Emory’s three health professional schools.
Workshop participants and organizers were excited about the future of IPE at Emory.
“The afternoon design-thinking workshop was an interesting and beneficial way for Woodruff Health Sciences stakeholders to come together to brainstorm how we can create an IPE program that will teach our students how to work efficiently in interprofessional teams do, whether they’re working in the community, classroom or clinical settings,” says Maha Lund, planning committee chair for Medical Education Day and associate professor and program director of the Emory Physician Assistant Program.
Linda Levine, professor of pediatrics at Emory School of Medicine and director of the Woodruff Health Educators Academy, agrees. “The workshop provided a great opportunity to learn more about the design-thinking approach and how we can apply it to health professions education,” says Levin. A prototype of a program that I think would be useful to students throughout the Health Sciences Center. I can’t wait to see how the Office of IPECP uses the ideas generated by the 12 teams – there is so much potential for IPE development at Emory.”
garrett notes, “The Hatchery team was very impressed with the exhibits and innovative thinking during the workshop. There are innovative thinkers through the WHSC, and bringing them together for collaborative work is always a treat.
Guest says, “It was just what we hoped this workshop would do.” “We were able to see clear themes generated by our students and faculty together. When 12 independent teams coalesce around three priority topics – common spaces on campus, they activate as teams to support community health needs. engagement, and classroom time together – we know where the excitement about the future of IPE at Emory lies. Our office and advisory committee will now explore the proposed ideas and determine which ones we develop in both the short and long term. This is an exciting time to be thinking about IPECP at Emory.