A South African partnership—one of four “innovation collaboratives” selected by the U.S. Institute of Medicine’s Global Forum—is developing competencies for transformational and shared leadership on health teams. They are also focusing on the design and implementation of competency-based interprofessional skill-building for teamwork in community and primary healthcare settings.
Their plans were presented at the Global Forum inaugural meeting in Washington, DC, in March by Prof. Marietjie de Villliers, Professor in Family Medicine and Deputy Dean of Education on the Faculty of Health Sciences at Stellenbosch University in Cape Town, South Africa. The South African partnership consists of Stellenbosch University, University of the Western Cape, and University of the Free State.
What are the characteristics and competencies of a leader on a health team who will promote transformative learning and interdependence in a multi-cultural environment? They have begun the process to identify the relevant competencies for these “change agents,” and will then develop an interprofessional competencies framework, and create a suitable leadership training program.
One of the anticipated outcomes of this process, pointed out Prof. de Villiers, “is that we will understand what kind of leaders are required in our health team context and what is expected of them.” It will result in interventions necessary to create the desired leaders and equip their partners as role models for facilitating transformative learning and interdependence.
In order to design and implement competency-based, interprofessional skill-building for teamwork, they will also be developing education learning opportunities for interprofessional teams in various settings. This includes rural clinical schools, primary healthcare settings, community partnerships, NGOs, and through an early childhood development initiative with the government.
Interprofessional education will be integrated into the curricula. Finding a common approach to patient care and social accountability will be integral to their interprofessional education strategy.
Prof. de Villiers’ powerpoint presentation and more information about the IOM Innovation Collaboratives can be found here.