Stakeholder views of the training needs of an interprofessional practitioner who works with older people

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Shield, F, Enderby, P & Nancarrow, S 2006, Stakeholder views of the training needs of an interprofessional practitioner who works with older people, Nurse Education Today, vol. 26, no. 5, pp. 367-76

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This paper, reports on United Kingdom research to examine the education and training requirements of an interprofessional practitioner for older people. The research was part of a larger study, funded by a local Workforce Development Confederation to identify whether there is a need for an interprofessional practitioner, and if so, determine their role and training requirements. Views of clients, carers and service providers were elicited using multiple methods including interviews, focus groups and questionnaires. The majority of service providers identified the need for an interprofessional practitioner and confirmed that these staff already exist within many multi-disciplinary community teams. The range of educational needs identified reflects the understanding that rehabilitation for older people requires a broad spectrum of knowledge and skills that cover both ‘health’ and ‘social’ needs. It was felt that education and training should be established and accredited at a national level, with a career structure and appropriate recognition of the interprofessional role. Clients and carers identified unmet needs and want a ‘Jack of all trades’ who will complement the existing workforce. They recommended that recognised qualifications would provide interprofessional workers with ‘status’ and therefore acceptance by other professionals. This paper, discusses the implications of the stakeholder views on interprofessional education and training.

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