UMN Wins Inter-university Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition

Author: Christina M. Cauble, MBA, LNHA, HSE, Geriatric Education Specialist

On November 8, 2022, the top scoring teams from the University of Minnesota and St. Louis University went head to head in the Annual Inter-university Geriatric Case Competition, and UMN won. 

The Minnesota Northstar Geratric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) offers this competition annually; it’s spearheaded by Kristine Talley, PhD, CNP, RN, FGSA, associate professor in the School of Nursing. The competition includes students from many disciplines across several university campuses. It is a unique opportunity to develop interprofessional collaboration skills by creating an individualized plan of care for a simulated medically complex older adult.

The case vignette is always written by a group of interprofessional experts collaborating at the University of Minnesota and St. Louis University. This year the competition focused on a person who was a veteran with PTSD, chronic pain, and hoarding issues – to name a few of the comorbidities. The interprofessional teams of students then worked together toward a comprehensive plan of care to address the patient’s goals. 

This year the judges of the final competition said that both teams had great presentations, but what set the UMN team apart was that they kept the focus on the patient goals to frame the entire plan of care. This team demonstrated collaboration, resilience, and depth in understanding the complexity of caring for this simulated case. Team members of the top-scoring Minnesota team were Priya Periakaruppan (pharmacy student), Erin Hillegonds, and Sara Abbas, with coach Heather Fergusen, MSW. Interestingly, one of the team members who won the competition, Priya Periakaruppan, is a pharmacy student who has participated in the competition for three years. She had this to say about her experience:

“I am happy I had the opportunity to participate in this competition for three years. Not only have I learned more clinical knowledge in my courses that I can apply to cases, but I have also been able to gain experience in practicing patient-centered care. My understanding of other professions such as occupational therapy, social work, and dentistry, and the role they play on the care team has also been deepened.”

In 2022, the Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition included representatives from the professions of pharmacy, nursing, dentistry, physical therapy, occupational therapy, social work, physician associate, medicine, and management.  

In future years, the competition leaders hope to recruit students and experts from all these professions and more! See more about the annual Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition here.

You can view the 2022 winning case presentation here.