Health Care Team Challenge: A Versatile Model for Interprofessional Education

Publication ID Published Version
9287 December 11, 2012 1


The Health Care Team ChallengeTM (HCTC) is an innovative, versatile, low cost interprofessional (IP) learning activity that is used to simulate “real-life” team based problem solving. The HCTC model can easily be adapted to meet core competencies for collaborative care in all health professions programs. Key characteristics of a HCTC are described and one example of how the HCTC model has been successfully implemented is highlighted. The HCTC is a clinical cased-based competition between two or more interprofessional teams of students representing at least two health and social service disciplines (6-8 is ideal). Student participants receive the initial patient scenario at least one week, preferably 2 to 3 weeks, in advance of the live event.

Teams are instructed to work collaboratively to formulate a patient-centered plan of care. On the day of the event, the teams present their plan in front of a live audience of faculty, peers and community members. Then, teams are presented with additional information relevant to the case, challenging each team to adjust its management plan to incorporate the new information. Additionally, teams are asked to respond to “process questions” such as, “How did your team resolve conflicts?” and “What do you view as the strengths of your team?” Teams alternate in the presentation of the care plans and responses to team process questions. At the conclusion of the event, teams are evaluated by an IP panel of judges that may include the patient or family member, faculty, and / or a practicing community-based interprofessional care team. An “audience choice award” may also be presented. Teams are judged on both the quality of the management plan and the level of collaboration as illustrated by responses to the team process questions. All team participants, judges, and event sponsors receive recognition for their involvement. Winning team members may also receive prizes or scholarship funding.


Richardson B, Gersh M, Potter N. Health Care Team Challenge: A Versatile Model for Interprofessional Education. MedEdPORTAL Publications; 2012. Available from:

Contains Information Suitable for Patient Education

Educational Objectives

  1. To work collaboratively with students from other health professions to maintain a climate of mutual respect and shared values.
  2. To place the interests of the patient / family at the center of their plan of care.
  3. To apply the knowledge of one’s own professional role and those of other team members to appropriately assess and address the health care needs of the patient / family.
  4. To communicate effectively with the patient / family and other members of the health care team.
  5. To listen actively and encourage ideas and opinions of other team members.
  6. To engage team members in shared patient-centered problem solving.
  7. To integrate the knowledge and experience of all team members to inform decisions, while respecting the patient’s values, priorities, and preferences for care.
  8. To constructively manage disagreements about values, roles, goals, and actions that may arise among team members.
  9. To practice leadership skills that support effective team work. 


  • Interprofessional Education Collaboration (IPEC), Multiprofessional Teamwork, HCTC


  • Interpersonal & Communication Skills
  • Interprofessional Collaboration
  • Patient Care
  • Practice-based Learning & Improvement

Professional Interest

  • Communication Skills
  • Cultural Diversity/Cultural Competency
  • Health Education
  • Instructional Materials/Methods
  • Interprofessional
  • Professionalism
  • Quality Improvement

Instructional Methods

  • Assessment
  • Case-based Instruction/Learning

Academic Focus

  • Clinical Sciences
    • Clinical Skills/Doctoring

Intended Audience

  • Professional School
    • Allied Health Student
    • Dental Student
    • Medical Student
    • Nursing Student
    • Pharmacy Student


  • Presentation
  • Video

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