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VA Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education

DeBakey VA, Baylor College of Medicine Invite UHCOP to Collaborate on Interprofessional Education Training Through New Center

UH College of Pharmacy is among the institutional collaborators in the newly established Houston Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education at The Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center.

Funded by the VA Office of Academic Affiliations, the Houston Center is one of two new sites competitively selected to join the five existing Centers of Excellence nationwide. The center proposal was led by DeBakey VA, Baylor College of Medicine, and the Center for Innovations in Quality, Safety, and Effectiveness, an existing BCM-VA collaboration based at DeBakey VA. The center will be led by director Dr. LeChauncy Woodard, assistant professor of medicine-health services research at BCM, and co-director Dr. Jane Anderson, assistant professor of neurology at BCM and nurse practitioner at the DeBakey VA.

cathy hatfield photoThe goal of this program is to educate interprofessional trainees from medicine, mental health, undergraduate nursing, advanced practice nursing, pharmacy, and other health professions to deliver high quality, patient-centered, team-based primary care. Essential to the success of the program are the planned didactic and practice-based curricula, mentoring relationships amongst behavioral health and primary care; and the continuous identification of novel practice structures and methods for education.

"The success of this application reflects the contributions of many and lays a solid foundation for the collaboration that will occur throughout this program," Woodard said.  

The proposal is designed to benefit each program while drawing on each institution's unique strengths. Also part of the project are The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Texas Women’s University and Texas Southern University.

UHCOP’s role will be spearheaded by Cathy Hatfield, Pharm.D., clinical associate professor, director of Interprofessional Education (IPE) and director of Institutional Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experiences.

Hatfield will teach the center's faculty and staff the fundamental principles and skills necessary for effective interprofessional collaborative practice through a lecture series, which will include an introduction to IPE, the competencies established by the national Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC), the benefits to collaborative practice and patient care, overcoming challenges, and logistics, leadership and sustainability. The lectures also provide center faculty and staff to develop skills in communication, understand roles and responsibilities, and resolve conflicts to promote effective interprofessional teamwork.