The Administration for Community Living (ACL) has awarded a $1.75 million cooperative agreement to Rush University that will fill the gaps in health professions training programs by embedding disability-related content on the health care of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD) into interprofessional health education curriculum. Many health professions schools and licensing exams do not include disability-related content about the health care needs of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD) into their curriculum. The PATH-PWIDD is introducing an interprofessional health education curriculum for pre- and post-licensure health care students and leverages the continued work implemented with the PATH-PWIDD “Improving Acute, Primary and Transitional Healthcare with Individuals with Disabilities” conference on March 23-24, 2017 funded by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the WITH Foundation.
This September, Rush University, College of Nursing (PI. Sarah Ailey, PhD, RN, PHNA-BC, CNE, CDDN, FAAN) and its core partner institutions will start this important work through the Partnering to Transform Health Outcomes with Persons with Intellectual Disabilities and Developmental Disabilities (PATH-PWIDD) program (see PATH-PWIDD Abstract).
Rush University Team
- Sarah H. Ailey, Principal Investigator, Rush University College of Nursing
- Janice Odiaga, Co-Investigator, Rush University Office of Interprofessional Education
- Paul Kent, Co-Investigator, Rush University College of Medicine
- Molly Bathje, Co-Investigator, Rush University College of Health Sciences
- Tricia Johnson, Co-Investigator, Rush University College of Health Sciences
PATH-PWIDD Partnering Institutions
- John Fisher College, Golisano Institute for Developmental Disability Nursing (PI – Dianne Cooney-Miner, PhD, RN, CNS, FAAN);
- University of Illinois at Chicago, HealthMattersTM Program (PI – Jasmina Sisirak, PhD, MPH);
- University of Minnesota, Institute on Community Integration (PIs – Brian Abery, PhD and Renáta Tichá, PhD); and,
- Villanova University, Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing (PI – Suzanne Smeltzer, EdD, RN, ANEF, FAAN).
The PATH-PWIDD program will work with a National Cross-Sector Consortium with three Action Networks and a Cross-Sector Steering committee including advocates with ID/DD, family members, caregivers, healthcare education and practice leaders, community organizations, policy, accreditation, licensing, and financial experts to 1) address the lack of content about individuals with ID/DD in interprofessional health education curriculum and 2) develop high impact inclusive curricular materials and standardized practice experiences for integration into Interprofessional Education and Practice (IPE) programs at our core partner institutions and then disseminated to 30 other institutions to train 15,000 students over 5 years. The Collective Impact Model guides our approach uniting cross-sector partners with a common agenda for innovative change.
The National Consortium
- Increase the number of health professional students trained in ID/DD;
- Improve student knowledge of the health care needs of individuals with ID/DD;
- Enhance number of health professionals feeling prepared to provide health care to individuals with ID/DD; and,
- Strengthen the capacity of health professions faculty to train their students about the health care needs of individuals with ID/DD.
Examining Trainings and Curriculums within Interprofessional Health Education
- Examine what trainings and curriculum currently exist within interprofessional health education and identify gaps;
- Impact more than 30 institutions and to train 15,000 students during the five-year project; and,
- Engage advocates with ID/DD and their families during the entire project period.
- Formulate a common agenda, understanding of problems, and collective vision for change in IPE programs.
- Develop materials for the IPE programs that are informed by the partnership with advocates with ID/DD, using an iterative participatory process.
- Create a repository/clearinghouse of existing resources to support the project goal and objectives and current and future ID/DD IPE programs.
- Evaluate the materials across 30 IPE programs.
- Disseminate evidence-based materials across national IPE programs or as part of any health care professional program curriculum.
Anticipated Outcomes for Pre- and Post-Licensure Health Professionals
Improved knowledge, competencies, and skills in caring for persons with ID/D. Our product will be evidence-based materials for widespread dissemination to IPE programs or as part of any health care professional program curriculum.
The PATH-PWIDD program adds to ACL’s ongoing work to improve healthcare equity. It will complement the Center for Human Dignity funded last September. Both grants aim to increase the life expectancy of people with disabilities and are funded under Projects of National Significance.
The PATH-PWIDD award is from September 1, 2020, to August 31, 2025. ACL Projects of National Significance focus on the most pressing issues affecting people with developmental disabilities and their families. Through the projects, ACL supports the development of national and state policy and awards grants and contracts that enhance the independence, productivity, inclusion, and integration of people with developmental disabilities.