Pharmacy and DO Students Collaborate

Second Year Students Work Together at 4th Annual Interprofessional Symposium

April 12, 2018
Students at TouroCOM and TCOP worked together during the fourth annual Interprofessional Symposium held on March 19.

A US citizen arrives in a hospital bearing symptoms of the Zika virus. The patient has a history of substance abuse, no family support and no insurance. As part of a multi-disciplinary team, how do you ensure the patient receives the best possible care?

This was the fictional case given to 170 TouroCOM and 80 TCOP students as part of the Fourth Annual TCOP-TouroCOM Interprofessional Symposium held on March 19.

“Interprofessional education is a national standard,” stated Dr. Roman Fazylov, a professor of pharmacy practice at TCOP who helped run the symposium. “Our goal is to foster professional collaboration and it is exciting to introduce our students to this new frontier in healthcare practice. The students learn by trying to solve the case together. By having our students at TCOP and TouroCOM Harlem work and train together we enable them to enter the workforce with a greater understanding of the various roles in the healthcare team.”

Dr. Esquire Anthony of TouroCOM agreed. “These collaborations enable our students to seek better treatment outcomes while becoming aware of the different strengths other professions have.”

Students were given a lengthy case study and then divided into groups to determine treatment options given the patient’s socio-economic limitations.

TCOP student Giselle Chahili, who attended Touro College School of Health Sciences Interprofessional Education Symposium the week before, said that working with DO students was a new experience for her.

“Last week, I learned a great deal about how mental health professionals work with a medical team,” she said. “Today, learning how DO students approach a problem was eye-opening and gave me a better understanding of a pharmacist’s role in a multidisciplinary team.”

Benjamin Ayd, a second-year student at TouroCOM (OMS-II), said that the interaction between the two student groups was beneficial.

“Before we had the symposium, we didn’t know a lot about their capabilities and they didn’t know a lot about ours,” he said. “Now we’re aware of each other’s expertise and how we can work together to seek a better patient outcome.”

Dr. Fazylov said that more frequent interprofessional collaborations are planned between the two schools.