IPE Glossary

Interprofessional Education

also known as inter-professional education or “IPE”

In the context of health care education refers to  active learning processes where students and/or health care professionals from two or more professions in health and social care learn together and from each other during all or part of their professional training with the object of cultivating models of health team practices for providing client- or patient-centered health care.

Example: students from medicine, pharmacy and nursing learning together in patient case discussions, simulations or practice experiences

Interprofessional Collaborative Practice

When multiple health workers from different professional backgrounds work together with patients, families, caregivers, and community to deliver the highest quality of care.

Example: professionals from medicine, pharmacy,  nursing, and social work working together as a team to share healthcare decisions with each other and their patient(s)

Collaborative Practice

Occurs when health providers from varying professional backgrounds provide coordinated and comprehensive services by working with patients, their families, caregivers and communities to deliver the highest quality of care across settings. Collaborative practices often involve health providers who do not necessarily share a common employer or worksite but develop partnerships that enhance patient care by coordinating care services and which may impart otherwise unavailable care privileges to collaborating health providers.

Example: In pharmacy, this term often refers to the ability of pharmacists in some states to partner with medical providers with independent prescriptive authority to enter into a legal agreement allowing the pharmacist to directly initiate, modify, and discontinue drug therapy orders.

Interdisciplinary Team

A team of health care professionals who have varied specialized knowledge and skills who work in a coordinated fashion toward a common goal for the patient.  Such a team may include individuals within the same profession but with different expertise or it may include individuals from different health professions.

Example: primary care provider, endocrinologist, pharmacist and OB/GYN working together to care for pregnant patient with diabetes

Intraprofessional Team

A team of professionals who are all from the same profession collaborating on patient care.

Example: pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and pharmacy assistants working together to dispense medications for a patient

Multidisciplinary Team

A team of professionals with representatives from different disciplines who contribute to improve care.

Example: endocrinologist, nurse educator, dietitian, and pharmacist who all care for the same patient but who do not necessarily share decisions or communicate in real time. Efforts may be coordinated by referral and consult.