Dental Hygiene and Occupational Therapy: Working Together to Improve Oral Care
AffiliationUniversity of Southern Indiana
TitleDental Hygiene and Occupational Therapy: Working Together to Improve Oral Care
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The purpose of this quality improvement project is to determine the effectiveness and student satisfaction following a virtual interprofessional learning module between dental hygiene and occupational therapy students. Will a virtual interprofessional experience (IPE) learning module between dental hygiene and occupational therapy students improve student’s interprofessional teamwork skills and knowledge, and provide student satisfaction with their IPE learning experience? The Triple Aim and more preventive focus on systemic health resulted in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This medical focus improves public health, patient experiences, and controls costs. 1 This led to a medical-dental integration (MDI) model whereby medical and dental systems are linked to support patients and remove treatment barriers. 2 Based on IPCP concepts; it requires IPE- providing curricular experiences readying students for collaborative practice. Lack of IPE experiences contributes to misinformation about qualifications and scope-of-practice of other providers, influences interactions with other disciplines and self-perceptions as professionals. 3 Amended dental hygiene accreditation standard 2-15 requires including IPE within curricula. 4 A virtual interprofessional learning module was implemented with 30 occupational therapy students and 23 dental hygiene students from September-December 2020. Students were asked to complete the SPICE-R2 instrument and additional five questions both prior to and after completing the IPE virtual module to determine the module’s effectiveness and student satisfaction. Voluntary surveys were distributed through Qualtrics and displayed the informed consent letter. Each survey took no more than 10 minutes to complete. Data collected will be used to determine future implementation of virtual interprofessional activities and will be used to share with other educators in dissemination through articles, presentations and posters.
How did the implemented strategy impact student learning or academic success? Results revealed improvement in student understanding of professional criteria and in interactions with other providers. See student quotes below: Combining various fields of thought can bring about new ideas as well as solutions to the issues faced by a client. With this newly obtained aspect on client-centered care, we can now look at clients in more than one selective view. Moving forward, we will apply what we learned about communication to future IPE experiences to provide collaborative care to our patients.
What are the findings related to student learning and success or your teaching practice? All students completed the IPE simulation requirements successfully. Showed improvement in all pre/post survey questions. What were the unexpected outcomes and lessons learned? Student reported surprise in the level of similarity between professional curricula. Students were impressed by the depth of knowledge in each other’s professional skill set.
How might others apply, adapt, or extend what you have done to address student learning or academic success in their teaching practice? Follow up experiences allowing live interactions in the community. Utilization of a standardized patient. Focus on providing detailed procedural instructions.
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American Dental Association. Accreditation standards for dental hygiene education programs. [Internet] Chicago: Commission on Dental Accreditation. c2019 [cited 2020 Dec 15]. Available from: https://www.ada.org/~/media/CODA/Files/2019_dental_hygiene_standards.pdf?la=en