2 September 2011

Teamwork, fun and a bit of healthy competition won The University Of Queensland the Audience Choice Award at the recent National HealthFusion Team Challenge (Oz HFTC).

The group of UQ health science students battled it out against teams from seven other universities last week to prepare a patient management package in response to a fictitious clinical case study.

The study was based around a young Indigenous patient who had acquired a brain injury as a result of a car crash. Teams were assessed not only for their ability to address the patient’s physical needs, but his cultural needs and those of his family as well.

Project Director Dr Monica Moran said event organisers had designed the challenge to test the teams in multiple ways.

“In the real world, every team works differently and we wanted to test them not just on their ability to produce, but to think under pressure, and their ability to work creatively as a team,” Dr Moran said.

The HFTC is the first competition of its kind in Australia and is designed to educate the next generation of health practitioners in effective teamwork and interprofessional collaboration.

This year students from audiology, dentistry, dietetics, exercise physiology, medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, paramedic, pharmacy, physiotherapy, psychology and speech pathology programs participated.

Judge Professor Susan Nancarrow from Southern Cross University said she was impressed with the level and sophistication of the teams’ responses.

“I was particularly taken by the different approaches adopted by each team to team working, and the creativity they employed in presenting their cases,” Professor Nancarrow said.

“There was a great deal of learning here for everyone.”

The 2011 Oz HFTC was won by Deakin University, defeating teams from UQ, Flinders University, Griffith University, Monash University, Queensland University of Technology, the University of Melbourne and the University of Sydney.

Those interested in fielding a team in 2012 are encouraged to visit the HFTC website www.healthfusionteamchallenge.com

Media: Jane Furnas (0433 544 969, j.furnas@uq.edu.au)