Establishing Transdisciplinary Professionalism for Improving Health Outcomes - Workshop Summary


Note: Proceedings contain the opinion of the presenters, but do NOT reflect the conclusions of the Health and Medicine Division or the National Academies. Learn more about the differences between Reports and Proceedings.

Efforts to improve patient care and population health are traditional tenets of all the health professions. But in a time of rapidly changing environments and evolving technologies, health professionals and those who train them are being challenged to work beyond their traditional comfort zones and often in teams. A new professionalism might be a mechanism for achieving improved outcomes by applying a “transdisciplinary professionalism” throughout health care and wellness that emphasizes cross-disciplinary responsibilities and accountabilities. Such a professionalism would facilitate multiple disciplines working together, each using its own expertise, to address common problems.

On May 14-15, 2013, the IOM Global Forum on Innovation in Health Professional Education held a workshop to discuss how a shared understanding can be integrated into education and practice to promote a transdisciplinary model of professionalism. Participants in the workshop also explored the barriers to transdisciplinary professionalism as well as the impact of an evolving professional context on health system users, learners, and others within the health system. This document summarizes the workshop.