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Highlighting IPE Faculty at UW - Peggy Odegard

Peggy Odegard, PharmD, BCPS, FASCP, CDE

Professor and Chair, UW School of Pharmacy






Peggy Odegard, PharmD, BCPS, FASCP, CDE, Professor and Chair in the University Of Washington School Of Pharmacy, has been enriching the educational experiences of health sciences students and faculty through simulation and interprofessional training since 1996. Dr. Odegard is also a Certified Diabetes Educator, working in diabetes education for over 20 years, and she is a fellow of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists.

Dr. Odegard’s area of expertise focuses on the role of pharmacists in caring for patients. Her research specifically concentrates on the care of older adults, those with diabetes, and medication safety. Her research also focuses on interpforessional education and she has extensive experience as a clinical pharmacist on interprofessional care teams in general internal medicine, diabetes, and geriatrics in both the hospital and community settings. She has published over 60 refereed manuscripts, chapters, and abstracts. In addition to her research, Dr. Odegard has been collaborating on the development of an interprofessionally applicable web-based error communication curriculum and is conducting a study evaluating the effects of community pharmacists in providing diabetes care and education to those with diabetes.

Why (and how) did you get involved with IPE?

Dr Odegard: I first got involved in IPE at Evergreen Hospital Medical Center way back when (1980s and 1990s) where my role was to provide coordination of the clinical pharmacy services and education to health care staff about medications, amongst other duties!  Many of our programs, services, and educational events were interprofessional and it raised my awareness to the power of learning together and in caring for patients as teams versus individual providers.  We had code teams for urgent response (learning together through Advanced Cardiac Life Support training), anticoagulation clinics, diabetes support, geriatrics support services, and cardiac rehabilitation services - all interprofessional. As part of my role, I helped establish a collaborative education program with the infectious disease division so that pharmacists, infectious disease medical specialists, and infection control nursing could share information about use of antibiotics to optimize use and minimize problems.  We met every two weeks for “antibiotic rounds” together in a collaborative clinical conference fashion with learning through case discussion and interprofessional decision making. When I came back to the UW in my current faculty position in 1996, the UW was just starting an IPE group called Health Sciences Program for Interdisciplinary Education (HSPICE) through a grant led by Pam Mitchell, PhD.  I was invited to participate in the group by a fellow pharmacy faculty member, Wayne Kradjan, PharmD, a mentor and practice role model. Given the range of health professions represented in the HSPICE group and project opportunities, I was very interested in this chance to work together to promote shared learning for our students and the potential to develop collaborative services & projects.  My clinical role at that time evolved into geriatrics and diabetes, both quite interprofessional in their team approach to care so this continued to give me the opportunity to practice my philosophy of care.

What do you believe are the benefits of IPE?

Dr. Odegard: I believe the benefits of IPE are multifold - the patient benefits as their care professionals learn better how to work together, communicate, and minimize gaps or misfires in communication.  The care professionals benefit from the opportunity to learn more than they would have known on their own  - there is just too much information for anyone to know it all.  For students, there is great benefit in gaining a sense of other professionals, their roles, when/how to consult, and the benefits of shared decision making.

What has been the most memorable experience/highlight of teaching IPE so far?

Dr. Odegard: My most memorable IPE event is probably working Capstone simulations with the initial planning team and feeling that only through Brian Ross’s wonderful humor could we all move to a shared understanding and goals on our effort.  His ability with people and use of humor are great neutralizers for those who may come to the IPE table with prior expectations that they are professionally more or less important!  My most memorable ongoing IPE experience is the interaction I observe in my practice at the UW Diabetes Care Center currently where professional interaction is high level and essential.  Our students get to experience this first hand and it is really rewarding to see it as pharmacy students are asked by the physician for consults, dietary students have the chance to learn about medications, and medical students consult with pharmacists or nurses to develop care plans. The list goes on but the interaction is its best form of real-time interprofessional education - I learn something about perspective, patient needs, or approaches to care every day I am in clinic!