Empirically, I would argue that there are four key areas which we need to concentrate on in order to develop the interprofessional field in the next five to ten years.
First, we need to employ more qualitative work to generate more data related to actually observing the interactive processes which occur during interprofessional activities – learning, facilitating and collaborating.
Second, we need to focus our empirical work to provide a better understanding of the translation of interprofessional activities into collaborative behaviour, enhanced practice and the delivery of care.
Third, we need to undertake economic analyses of IPE and IPP to begin to generate data into the actual costs and benefits of these activities.
Fourth, we need to move beyond single site studies, to engage with colleagues in other organizations and undertake multi-institution studies that will provide broader empirical inferences that can build a more comprehensive evidence base. Theoretically, I would argue we need to ensure that such perspectives become a core part of the work which is undertaken developing and studying IPE and IPP activities. Also, that such work begins to problematize (our everyday assumptions) in order to generate a more critical approach to understanding the field.
(Scott Reeves, Editor-in-Chief)
To read more see: Ideas for the development of the interprofessional field. Journal of Interprofessional Care; 24:217-219.