Edition 2: March 2018

Mobilising system wide commitment and participation for the further development of Australian IPE.

This second newsletter provides an overview and highlights what the SIF Project team have been working on during 2017. We also look forward and map out what we see happening in 2018 and, importantly, how individuals and organisations can become engaged in supporting Australian IPE and IPCP.

In this newsletter:

2017 Overview and highlights

The Governance and Development Framework (GDF)

Unlike the previous five IPE development and research projects we have conducted over the past ten years (see www.sifproject.com/projects), the SIF Project is different. Whereas the earlier projects were built around the development of information, resources and establishing directions for the future, the SIF Project has an overarching focus on making things happen in the Australian world of IPE and, more broadly, health professional education. In particular, SIF has a remit to establish what we have previously discussed as a ‘national IPE Governance and Development Framework’ (GDF) – see figure below.

  1. A National Interprofessional Education Council (IPE Council) – a leadership body
  2. A standing committee focusing on building IPE capacity and capability across Australian programs of health professional education
  3. A standing committee focusing on developing new knowledge related to all aspects of IPE, in particular as this relates to Australian IPE
  4. The development of a regional IPE knowledge repository that will capture, organise and disseminate IPE related knowledge and information
  5. A National IPE Workplan that will be used to document, prioritise and coordinate the work of all elements of the Governance and Development Framework.

SIF Project work in 2017 has focused on progressing the implementation of the GDF. The details of this work are provided below.

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Accreditation Systems Review: SIF Submission 

Given the central importance of accreditation for establishing the legitimacy, credibility and necessity for areas of practice and education to be included in core curriculum, the timing of the Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) ‘Independent Review of Accreditation Systems with the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme for health professionals’ (the ASR), could not have been better. From March 2017 onwards, the SIF project team members met with members of the ASR. As did many other organisations, we authored and submitted our views on Australian accreditation and the future of IPE (see sifproject.com/updates).

Our submission drew on research and consultations conducted over the last decade. We also drew on the experience of colleagues internationally. In reviewing the submission Richard Pitt, Chair, of the Centre for the Advancement of Interprofessional Education (CAIPE) – United Kingdom – and Visiting Professor Tokyo Metropolitan University, commented:

“This is a significant development for Australia to ensure embedding interprofessional education and collaborative practice in the accreditation system. I commend the recommendations the SIF Report makes to the Australian accreditation system and the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme. CAIPE welcomes this contribution to the global development of interprofessional collaborative learning and practice.”


SIF Project submission:

Our submission to the ASR was built around five recommendations.

1. IPE standards and accreditation to be adopted as part of the Australian accreditation system.

This overarching recommendation to be given effect through the following:

2. All accredited professions adopt common interprofessional education standards.

3. All accredited professions adopt a common approach to conducting interprofessional education accreditation.

4. The National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (NRAS) supports the development of resources, tools and guidelines specifically aimed at enabling the development and successful implementation of IPE and accreditation.

5. NRAS establishes arrangements that link the work of a future interprofessional education Council with the work of the national accreditation system.

The ASR draft final report included an extensive and extremely positive discussion as to the importance and further development of Australian IPE. The work of the SIF Project also received positive comment.

As far as we are aware, the positive comments and strong recommendations as to the inclusion of IPCP and IPE standards in all curricula and accreditation standards, is the first time that such comments have been made at the national level in such an important COAG initiated review.

The ASR final report is now with COAG Health Ministers. Whichever way the COAG response is developed, we believe a new level of positive recognition has been accorded to IPE and IPCP and their role in ensuring the safety, quality, patient centredness and sustainability of the Australian health system.


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National IPE round table | A key milestone for the SIF Project

Our primary focus during 2017 has been working closely with 17 national peak bodies to determine how the national IPE GDF could be established and sustained.

As we discussed in our previous newsletter and in our funded proposal, it was always clear to us that establishing and sustaining a new element of the Australian higher education, accreditation and health systems would need the active participation of all relevant bodies across the three sectors – higher education, health and government. 

Just as the ASR became a national focus for considering the place and role of IPCP and IPE and its relationship to the Australian national accreditation system, the SIF project created a decision making and action focused forum to bring all key bodies together to focus on the establishment of an Australian IPE GDF, and, more particularly, an Australian Interprofessional Education Council. The Round-Table was held at the University of Technology Sydney on the 21st September.

In a report on the round-table, we identified the important work to be undertaken at the event (see sifproject.com/updates). Organisations that participated in the round table can also be found in the report.

Outcomes of the Round-Table

Convening the round table was a major mile-stone for the SIF Project. Importantly, it was a collective event comprised of the organisations and constituencies that would be critical to the future status and development of IPE within the Australian health and higher education sectors. It allowed us to consolidate and expand on what had to date been the commitment from individual bodies. It allowed us to model what we thought an interprofessional Council and an interprofessional way of working, would look and feel like. Critically, it allowed the SIF Project to seek the comments and support of a diverse range of Australian peak bodies in solving a number of critical issues involved in establishing the GDF and, in particular, finding a national organisational location and auspice for the Australian IPE Council, the leadership body of the GDF.

In the round table report, we summarised the major outcomes as follows:

Round table participants:

  1. Affirmed the vision, scope and focus of the SIF project remit (see below)
  2. Reviewed, improved and agreed a statement of purpose and terms of reference for the Australian IPE Council
  3. Provided advice on how to best auspice and approach funding the work of the IPE Council and other elements of the IPE Governance and Development Framework. This advice focuses on the development of a multi-organisation and consortium based approach
  4. A number of participating organisations agreed to work together with the project team to explore the benefits and implications of a collective – consortium or centre of excellence approach – to auspicing and funding the IPE Council
  5. Confirmed interest in working with the SIF project to extend a system wide approach to the design, implementation and sustainability of Australian IPE.

The table below provides a statement of purpose and terms of reference for the Australian IPE Council that was supported by round-table participants:


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SIF conference presentations in 2017

Australia and New Zealand Association of Health Professional Educators (ANZAHPE) 2017 conference

Members of the SIF Project Management Team presented at the 2017 Australian and New Zealand Association for Health Professional Educators (ANZAHPE) Conference, which was held in Adelaide from the 11 – 14 July. We presented on the aims and development of the SIF Project. The presentation can be found here. Along with the presentations we gave, we had a SIF Project stall in the exhibition area. We would like to thank everyone who stopped by to say hello and find out more about the project.

Registration is now open for the 2018 ANZAHPE conference with will be held in Tasmania. Visit the conference website for more information.

The 1st Asia-Pacific Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice (APIPEC) conference

The 1st Asia-Pacific Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice conference was held in the City of Solo in Indonesia from the 13-15th of October. The conference was hosted by the Indonesian Young Health Professionals’ Society and Universitas Sebelas Maret. The conference aimed to lay a foundation for interprofessional education and collaboration development in the Asia-Pacific region by strengthening stakeholders’ engagement through experience sharing from world experts and national IPEC champions.

SIF Project members, Associate Professor Monica Moran and Professor Gary Rogers, were invited keynote speakers. Both delivered keynote presentations to the audience of health professionals, students, administrators and educators from across the Asia-Pacific region. They also facilitated multiple workshops throughout the conference. During Monica’s keynote presentation titled ‘From Consensus to Practice’, she had an opportunity to share information about the SIF Project. In his keynote Gary shared research informed content regarding IPE curriculum development.

Interest in IPE and IPCP is very strong in the Asia-Pacific. This bodes well for the future of health and community care in the region.

Image: Monica Moran with conference delegates.

Interprofessional Education Showcase | The University of Auckland, New Zealand

Presented by the Centre for Medical and Health Sciences Education at the University of Auckland, the Showcase was a full day of fascinating presentations from a wide range of presenters from around the country. The biennial forum was a well-attended event and an excellent opportunity to network within the IPE research community.

The SIF Project Lead, Assoc. Prof. Roger Dunston, was an invited speaker. The presentation from the event is available here.

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What’s happening in 2018?

Establishing the IPE consortium body

We have almost completed discussions with four national and two regional peak bodies who have expressed interest in becoming a consortium grouping that would offer an organisational home an auspice for the Australian IPE Council and the broader GDF. We anticipate concluding these discussions within the next few months. As soon as possible, we will make a statement about the formation of the consortium.

Establishing the Australian IPE Council

Establishing the Australian IPE Council and GDF. The formation of the consortium, will lead the way to the formation of the Australian IPE Council and GDF. We anticipate that this will occur in the last quarter of 2018, with the first meeting of the Council being held soon after.

The development of an Australian/New Zealand knowledge repository

Plans are underway to create a regional IPE knowledge repository that will capture, organise and disseminate IPE related knowledge and information.

SIF Project Management Team activity

In addition to working on the establishment of the Australian IPE Council and GDF, the SIF Project Management Team are undertaking activities that will assist the Council and Steering Committees get underway with a national IPE work plan.

SIF at the 2018 ANZAHPE Conference | Hobart, Australia

SIF will be running a workshop and giving a presentation at the 2018 ANZAHPE conference in early July, 2018. See the conference website for more information.

SIF at All Together Better Health IX | Auckland, New Zealand

SIF will be running a workshop and giving a presentation at the 9th All Together Better Health Conference in Auckland in early September, 2018. See the conference website for more information.

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Becoming involved with the IPE Council and GDF

We are very aware that the development focus of the SIF project has to date been focused on working with national and regional peak bodies in higher education, health, government etc.

Establishing the Australian IPE Council – an interprofessional Council – with the support and participation of all relevant peak bodies, will create a new structure and development focus within the Australian context. The Council will be the mechanism that will, for the first time, be able to mobilize an IPE/IPCP voice and place in the development of Australian health professional education, accreditation and health professional practice.

One of the first items on the Council’s agenda will be to determine how it can lead, connect, coordinate and co-produce with all individuals and organisations involved with or interested in IPE and IPCP.

We will keep you up to date with how the formation of the Council is developing.

If you have not already done so, please subscribe to our project newsletter.

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Get in touch

E: Roger.Dunston@uts.edu.au E: Tagrid.Yassine@uts.edu.au

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