Second Annual Missouri AHEC Collaborative Case Competition Currently Underway

The Missouri AHEC (MAHEC) Collaborative Case Competition is designed to reveal the complexity of healthcare delivery and the need for collaboration between healthcare professionals to reach the best health outcomes for clients and patients. Teams of students from varied disciplines are given the opportunity to teach, share, and learn with each other while conducting an analysis of the collaborative efforts during the care of a patient/client. Through this interdisciplinary exercise, students acquire the necessary knowledge and attitudes for cooperative, patient-centered practice, and it can all be done virtually with no face-to-face interaction required.

The pilot competition was launched in the fall of 2019 by the West Central and MidMissouri AHEC regions. Thirteen health profession students from across Missouri were divided into three teams and given one month to create a video summarizing their findings from the health care case. An interprofessional panel of thirteen judges rated the final videos.

A smaller-scale collaborative case competition was conducted at the Missouri AHEC Scholars statewide virtual meeting (Fall 2020) with great success. All students participating in the virtual meeting were divided into small teams and reviewed a healthcare case and formulated a five-minute presentation in zoom breakout sessions. It was wonderful to see students recognizing social determinants of health and barriers to care more commonly faced by people in rural areas.

The second annual MAHEC Collaborative Case Competition is currently in progress. News of our unique offering reached AHEC centers in other states who expressed interest in their own Scholars participating. This year, thanks to virtual platforms, health profession students nationwide can participate. This year’s teams are composed of over 70 health profession students. The case for the current competition looks at a couple, Mr. and Mrs. Williams, from Poplar Bluff, MO. Mr. Williams was admitted to Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center with an acute exacerbation of COPD. He has been released, and he and his wife are both having to learn how to manage his condition. Students are able to access all case information from the competition website and will work with their team to create their final video.

As one of the six core topics of AHEC Scholars is “Inter Professional Education”, this activity provides students with the opportunity to experience work as a team of multiple disciplines. Many students do not have this opportunity in their health professions training programs. We are excited that AHEC Scholars can provide learning activity this for them.