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Keywords:

  • behaviour change;
  • continuing education;
  • interprofessional education;
  • knowledge translation

Abstract

Cancer Care Nova Scotia developed an Interprofessional Core Curriculum for Nova Scotia health professionals, using a provincial educational needs assessment of health professionals caring for patients with cancer. This paper reports on the educational outcomes of the Interprofessional Core Curriculum programme, particularly the translation of learning into changes in practice and interprofessional interaction, and factors influencing change. The evaluation was guided by Kirkpatrick's model for assessing educational outcomes and Green and Kreuter's PRECEDE model of factors promoting and impeding change. In total, 411 participants attended the sessions, including nurses (54%), pharmacists (23%), and physicians (11%). We used self-report questionnaires to assess the transfer of learning into changes in practice and interprofessional interactions. High percentages of participants reported changes in both clinical practice and interprofessional interactions 3 months after the sessions. Frequently reported changes to interprofessional interactions were improved communication, increased confidence and assertiveness in interactions with other health professionals and being more respectful of other professions. Participants identified time and work-load as major barriers to change as well as lack of micro- and macro-system level support. The most common reported enabler of change was having attended the educational session. Overall, participants were highly supportive of interprofessional education, although when compared to nurses and pharmacists, physicians were less supportive and had proportionately lower attendance.