To address vaccine hesitancy and promote interprofessional collaboration, Qatar University (QU) Health hosted a transformative Interprofessional Education activity during 2024 Spring semester.

With a focus on vaccines, the initiative brought together students from various health disciplines across different QU Health colleges and those from the University of Calgary - Qatar, to pioneer novel approaches in public health education. The collaborative endeavour engaged 216 students and 25 facilitators from diverse programmes such as Biomedical Sciences, Public Health, Pharmacy, Nursing, and Dental Medicine.

The event aimed to cultivate a comprehensive understanding of vaccine hesitancy among students while exploring effective strategies to combat it through interprofessional teamwork. By fostering dialogue and collaboration among future healthcare professionals, the activity sought to underscore the pivotal role of interdisciplinary cooperation in addressing public concerns and misconceptions about vaccines.

Dr Susu Zughaier, associate professor of microbiology at QU’s College of Medicine, spearheaded a focused session on vaccination hesitancy to kick-start the event. This session served as a foundation for subsequent discussions, encouraging participants to analyze the complexities of vaccine hesitancy and its underlying factors.

The highlight of the activity was a dynamic case study presentation, where students assumed the roles of an interprofessional health team tasked with addressing patients’ concerns about vaccination. Through role-play and interactive dialogue, students demonstrated the importance of tailored communication and collaboration in dispelling vaccine myths and fostering informed decision-making.

Students were challenged to develop communication materials aimed at promoting vaccination uptake within the community. Leveraging their diverse expertise, students crafted engaging social media graphics and posters, blending informative content with visually captivating designs to effectively convey the importance of vaccination.

The activity showcased QU’s commitment to fostering interdisciplinary collaboration and underscored its dedication to addressing pressing public health challenges.

Dr Zughaier said: “Vaccines are the best public health strategy to protect the community. Implementing vaccination effectively requires collaboration between various sectors. Therefore, bringing students from various healthcare professions together to learn about vaccines, vaccine-preventable infections, and vaccine hesitancy is crucial for future healthcare professionals’ awareness.”

Related Story