Learning to be a physician by collaborating with experienced pediatric intensive care unit nurses

Laura Ibsen, Lori Moss, Mary Frances D. Pate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


To our knowledge, this is the first description of physicians in training engaging in an experience directly designed to enhance understanding and appreciation of the role and responsibilities of critical care nurses. Although there has been some work on IPE in undergraduate or graduate medical settings, much less has been done with postgraduate medical education and RNs. This is at least, in part, due to the constraints of available time in the training environment but may be impacted by interprofessional relationships among faculty, nurse managers, and nursing staff. Clearly, respectful and collaborative communication between nurses and doctors is essential for safe, effective patient care. This is particularly true for the high-stakes environment of the critical care unit, which provides a unique environment in which to teach and model effective interdisciplinary communication, especially when the experience can occur in a one-to-one patient ratio. As previously stated, nurses in PICUs are responsible for 1 or 2 patients whereas the residents may be responsible for all the patients. Having a "nursing experience" allowed these residents to learn what it is like to balance complex and conflicting patient needs simultaneously. Future direction of the program will be to reverse the experience with nurses spending time learning about the physician workflow and point of view.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)220-225
Number of pages6
JournalAACN advanced critical care
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care


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