Japanese healthcare delegate visit opens dialogue on interprofessional education
Eleven healthcare professionals and educators from five Japanese universities participated in discussions with Queen’s representatives recently, aimed at encouraging ongoing international collaboration between the two countries.
“I can see the similarities and differences in our approaches. Meeting face-to-face facilitated open dialogue and I believe we all learned a great deal,” says Margo Paterson, director of Queen’s Office of Interprofessional Education and Practice (OIPEP).
OIPEP’s philosophy of collaboration, which includes student and consumer voices in all aspects of inter-professional (IP) education, elicited some surprise from the visitors.
“In Japan, students would not be so open with discussion and questions,” says associate professor Yoichi Nagai, from the Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health Professionals at the Niigata University of Health & Welfare.
Lucinda Ling, a second-year Queen’s physiotherapy student, explains that active participation is incorporated into education early on at Queen’s and is an expected component of experiential learning. Robyn Grigg, second-year occupational therapy student, and Sylvia Magrys, PhD candidate in clinical psychology, shared their learning about the benefits and challenges of collaborative teamwork through the Health Care Team Challenge at Queen's.
The delegation presented at the Interprofessional Forum Series hosted by Queen’s OIPEP and participated in meetings with consumers, students and the OIPEP team to compare and contrast IP education in Canada and Japan.
Patient and family representatives also attended the meetings and described their unique contribution as educators of Queen’s students.
“When students visit us in our homes as part of their curriculum, they have a rare opportunity to ask questions and experience the reality of individuals with health conditions or disabilities,” says Bill Meyerman, OIPEP steering committee member.
Richard Reznick, dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, welcomed the delegation at a reception and says he is considering how the exchange of knowledge with Japanese universities can continue. Jennifer Medves, director of the School of Nursing, also supports ongoing international collaboration.