Geriatrics, Interprofessional Practice, and Interorganizational Collaboration: A Knowledge-to-Practice Intervention for Primary Care Teams

Authors

  • David Ryan PhD, CPsych,

    Corresponding author
    1. Director of Education & Knowledge Processes, Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Medicine University of Toronto
    • Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto, H475, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M4N 3M5.
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  • Robert Barnett MA,

    1. Director of Strategic Planning, North East Community Care Access Centre, Assistant Professor, Northern Ontario School of Medicine
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  • Cheryl Cott BPT, MSc, PhD,

    1. Associate Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Director, Arthritis Community Research & Evaluation Unit
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  • William Dalziel MD, FRCPC,

    1. Professor, Department of Geriatric Medicine Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa
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  • Iris Gutmanis PhD,

    1. Director of Evaluation & Research Regional Geriatric Program of Southwestern Ontario, Assistant Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, The University of Western Ontario
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  • David Jewell MSW, MHSc,

    1. Administrative Director, Regional Geriatric Program of Central Ontario, Assistant Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioural Neurosciences, McMaster University, Hamilton
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  • Mary Lou Kelley MSW, PhD,

    1. Director, Centre for Education & Research & Aging & Health (CERAH), Professor, School of Social Work & Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay
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  • Barbara Liu MD, FRCPC,

    1. Executive Director, Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto
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  • John Puxty MD, FRCPC

    1. Medical Director, Regional Geriatric Program of South Eastern Ontario, Associate Professor & Chair, Division of Geriatric Medicine, Queens University, Kingston
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  • Disclosures: The authors report that this research was supported by an Ontario Ministry of Health, HealthForceOntario Interprofessional Care/Education Grant.

Abstract

Introduction

Caring for frail seniors requires health professionals with skills and knowledge in 3 core competencies: geriatrics, interprofessional practice, and interorganizational collaboration. Despite a growing population of frail seniors in all developed countries, significant gaps exist in preparation of health professionals in these skills. To help close these gaps, a knowledge-to-practice (KTP) process was undertaken to increase the capacity of newly created family health teams and longer standing Community Health Centers in the Province of Ontario, Canada.

Methods

Each team identified a staff member to become its facilitator in the 3 core skill sets. Guided by a KTP framework, a set of training modules were created, compiled into a digital toolkit for transfer into practice, translated in a multimethods workshop, and implemented using a variety of strategies to optimize practice change.

Results

Staff from 82% of the targeted primary care teams learned to use the toolkit in a train-the-facilitator process that was highly valued, and prompted a range of changes in personal and team practice. A digital toolkit for primary care teams remains an enduring and often used resource.

Discussion

Closing the knowledge gap in the core competencies for frailty focused care is complex. A KTP framework helped guide a staged multimethod process that produced both individual and team practice change and on online toolkit that has a continuing influence.

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