Andrew A. White, MD
Medical Director of UWMC General Medicine Unit (6NE), Director of UWMC Hospitalist Group
This feature is part of our series highlighting the work of faculty teaching IPE at UW.
Andrew grew up in Albuquerque, NM, attended college at Princeton, followed by medical school at Vanderbilt. He followed his wife to Seattle to complete Internal Medicine residency training at the University of Washington and remained on the faculty at UWMC. He now serves as the medical director of 6NE (the general medicine unit), the director of the hospitalist group, and a physician analyst with IT services. He works on a wide array of hospital committees aimed at improving safety, patient experience, and healthcare value. His research has focused on communication after adverse events, support for clinicians involved in adverse events, and electronic decision support systems.
Andrew A. White, MD
How and why did you get involved with IPE?
Dr. White: "My first involvement with IPE at UW came through research collaboration with Brenda Zierler and Tom Gallagher when I was invited to help train teams on effective interprofessional planning for medical error disclosure. Since then I’ve gone on to work on literature reviews, the undergraduate IPE seminars, and to facilitate TeamSTEPPS seminars in the capstone course. I’ve also been really fortunate to work in multiple operational and administrative groups that engage all professions to solve problems."
What do you believe are the benefits of IPE?
Dr. White: "One of the greatest strengths of the University of Washington is its size – we have an amazing breadth and depth of clinical and research opportunities here. However, our trainees are constantly on the move between sites and rotations, which makes it extremely hard to form stable teams of learners. Consequently, when I exited training, I really didn’t have a full appreciation for the opportunities I had to participate in a high performing interprofessional team in the inpatient environment. I hope that my participation in IPE helps other students to enter practice with better preparation."
What has been the most memorable experience/highlight of teaching IPE so far?
Dr. White: "I think the IPE sessions have been a lot of fun, and the curriculum is really well designed. It is great to hear the insight the students gain from the work. Personally, I think some of the interprofessional committees on which I serve are the most fun administrative duties. The P&T Quality and Safety committee brings together nurses, physicians, pharmacists, and IT experts to solve problems. Everybody brings something essential to the table and patients get better care as a result."