The University of New Mexico recently received notice that it is one of seven U.S. teaching institutions with both schools of nursing and medicine selected to participate in a national conference designed to develop new models of education that foster inter-professional training and curriculum reform to better prepare the future health care workforce.

"It's time for us to move away from a completely siloed approach to medical education," says Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation President George Thibault, M.D. "The health system of today and in the future is one in which health professionals will need to work in teams to achieve the best outcomes and the best quality. The institutions that we've chosen for this conference are already taking steps in that direction and we are hopeful they will be developing replicable models that can be used by others."

“We are delighted to be part of this ground-breaking initiative,” said UNM executive vice president for Health Sciences Paul Roth, M.D. “The future of excellent health care – both in New Mexico and nationally – will be through an integrated team health care approach.”

The selection process was highly competitive. UNM was one of seven institutions selected from a group of outstanding applications submitted by 32 schools. Others to participate will be: Duke University; New York University; Pennsylvania State; University of Colorado at Denver; University of Minnesota and Vanderbilt University.

These seven institutions were chosen because of the commitment of school leaders (deans, associate deans), and the commitment of both schools of nursing and of medicine to work together. They were also selected based on what they have already accomplished in inter-professional education and their commitment to future work.

The Macy and Carnegie foundations believe that if students in the health professions learn jointly in clinical settings, as graduates they will improve patient outcomes by working more collaboratively, communicating better with each other, and leading health care reform that assures patients quality.

"Educating Nurses and Physicians: Toward New Horizons," is the name of the conference which will be hosted June 16-18 in Stanford, CA by the Josiah Macy, Jr. Foundation and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The conference will explore implementation of reforms in nursing and medical education called for by the Carnegie Foundation's studies, Educating Nurses: A Call for Radical Transformation (December 2009, Jossey-Bass) and Educating Physicians: A Call for Reform (June 2010, Jossey-Bass).

These books will provide the background for conference discussions. The conference will focus on how schools of medicine and nursing can develop and implement educational initiatives that address three themes:

  • Integration: Innovations in teaching and curriculum that help students connect basic, clinical and social science knowledge with clinical experience. New models of clinical education, in particular, will be explored which provide more longitudinal and continuous experience than current practices.

 

  • Systems improvement: Innovations in teaching and learning that offer students opportunities to improve the health care system. This area focuses on students learning about and participating in systems improvement, patient safety and population health initiatives.

 

  • Professionalism: Innovations in teaching and learning professionalism. Identity formation occurs through formal instruction, lived experience, and the adoption of the shared values, behaviors and aspirations of the profession.

Contact: Cindy Foster, 272-3322