What is interprofessional practice and education?

Traditionally these terms have been defined as:

  • Interprofessional Education (IPE) occurs when two or more professions learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes.
  • Interprofessional Practice occurs when multiple health workers from different professional backgrounds work together with patients, families, careers and communities to deliver the highest quality of care.
  • Based on Framework for Action on Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice, World Health Organization, 2010

However, the National Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education has developed a definition of the “New” IPE which encompasses both practice and education:

  • Interprofessional practice and education (IPE) creates a shared space between interprofessional education, interprofessional practice and collaborative practice.
  • It is NOT about education for education’s sake. It’s about improving health, creating support systems and trying different models of practice. It intentionally supports people–including health professionals, health workers, students, residents, patients, families and communities — to learn together every day to enhance collaboration and improve health outcomes while reducing costs

CIPE’s additions to the ‘New IPE’ definition

IPE is bi-directional and includes at least two professions in a shared synchronous or asynchronous learning experience. We agree that some foundational knowledge can be taught uniprofessionally first and then reinforced interprofessionally