Assessing the Assessed: Performance of Doctor of Physical Therapy Students on the Interprofessional Professionalism Assessment During Clinical Rotation
Background: Current research suggests that students within healthcare education often lack understanding of the roles and responsibilities of other healthcare practitioners and have limited interprofessional collaborative practice (IPCP).1 Students from programs that do incorporate interprofessional education (IPE) tend to lose their interprofessional values once they leave the classroom.2 This research aims to determine how other health care providers assess DPT students’ ability to work interprofessionally in different settings using the Interprofessional Professionalism Assessment (IPA). DPT students can use the results of the IPA as feedback to improve and better prepare to work in an interprofessional environment.
Methods: Student recruitment consisted of DPT students from Regis University Class of 2020, during their third full-time clinical rotation. Non-PT healthcare practitioners rated the DPT student anonymously using the IPA. Researchers compiled the ratings via Qualtrics, and calculated descriptive statistics on the qualitative data.. Two researchers coded the open responses and compiled the qualitative data into themes. Consultation of themes occurred with faculty experienced in this mixed methods analysis.
Results: In the domains of the IPA: altruism, excellence, ethics, respect, communication, and accountability, DPT students scored a mean of 4.58/5 equating it to healthcare professionals “Agree” or “Strongly Agree” with the students demonstrating these professional behaviors. Students rated the highest on communication (4.72/5) and lowest on ethics (4.52). Within the quantitative results, there were 53 times when behaviors were ranked as “not observed.” Of these responses, 70% occurred in outpatient musculoskeletal settings; the remaining 30% occurred in acute or rehab settings. The most frequently unobserved question was Excellence - Question 4, which rated students’ propensity to review other healthcare professional’s documentation prior to creating a plan of care.
Conclusion: The initial hypothesis was that the Regis University DPT curriculum positively affects IPA scores in its DPT students. The results show that students scored high across all six domains of the IPA, demonstrating that the Regis University DPT curriculum prepares students well for work in the interprofessional setting. Future research is aimed at exploring the impact of IPE on the Regis University DPT class of 2021.