Indexed on: 29 Jul '17Published on: 29 Jul '17Published in: Journal of interprofessional care
Lack of nurse‒physician collaboration in wound care may result in prolonged healing times for patients. In order to facilitate future professional collaboration, undergraduate learning activities in interprofessional education (IPE) have been proposed. The aim of this study was to investigate nursing and medical students' attitudes and perceptions towards each other's future professions and interprofessional collaboration in wound care. Nursing and medical students took part in an interprofessional learning activity about wound care. Data were collected using the Jefferson Scale of Attitudes towards Physician‒Nurse Collaboration questionnaire to student groups before and after an IPE activity (pooled n = 221). Focus groups were conducted to deepen the knowledge about students' attitudes and perceptions. The results showed high scores on the attitude scale (mean 53.2, possible maximum = 60) both before and after IPE, indicating positive attitudes towards nurse‒physician collaboration. Nursing students scored higher than medical students both pre-IPE (p < 0.001) and post-IPE (p = 0.006). However, no difference on scale scores could be identified between pre- and post-IPE. The following themes emerged in the analysis of focus group discussions: "Approaching patient care from different perspectives," "Need for collaboration and clear professional roles in practice," "Structures hindering future collaboration," and "IPE as a tool for professional practice and roles." The shared learning activity provided insights into the other profession's competence. This kind of learning activity may increase future interprofessional collaboration, and thus, improve wound care.