In September 2012 I was lucky to join fellow students from around New Zealand at the Asia Pacific Forum (APAC).
I was thrilled at the opportunity to meet healthcare leaders from around the world, listen to some inspirational speakers and offer a student’s perspective into the healthcare challenges of the future.
I came away with a mind full of knowledge and a better understanding of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Triple Aim which is based on improving the health of our population, enhancing the patient care experience and reducing or at least controlling the per capita cost of care.
Counties Manukau Health along with other healthcare organisations around the world share the same vision.
I was inspired by Maureen Bisognano’s keynote presentation about patient centered care and thought her video, which showed members of the Mangere community having fun at a zumba class was a brilliant example of a public health programme designed specifically for its community. I also feel it’s important for us as future dietitians to realise that effective nutrition interventions should be tailored to suit each individual’s needs. A ‘one size fits all’ dietary intervention will not be an appropriate approach.
It was great to meet students from diverse fields and hear their different perspectives – there were some wonderful conversations that took place during the lunch breaks.
For me it’s important to foster good interprofessional relationships and to collaborate with members of other disciplines to ensure the best outcomes for the patients.
Within a hospital setting, medical staff, nurses, dietitians, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, and social workers need to work together to reach a common goal for the patient.
Effective communication, trust, mutual respect and good team work is essential for effective interprofessional collaboration and each profession has a specific set of skills which should be utilised in combination to ensure that the highest level of care is achieved.
So how am I going to share the knowledge I’ve learnt at the Forum? First of all I’d like to discuss with my fellow dietetic students at Massey University the essence of the Triple Aim and how we can improve the value, safety and delivery of healthcare in our future dietetic practice.
Many students are unfamiliar with the concept of the Triple Aim so the first step would be to raise awareness of what the Triple aim is all about, followed by an interactive discussion session so that everyone can have a chance to express their views.
I have briefly spoken about this idea with the Massey Dietetic programme leader and we are currently deciding on a date to do this. I will keep you posted…
Andrew is currently completing his first year of a two year Master degree in Dietetics at Massey University.