National Academies of Practice Announces Annual Award Winners

Each year at the National Academies of Practice (NAP) Annual Induction Banquet, NAP bestows awards to truly deserving candidates who are nominated by their peers.  This year’s awards were presented on March 5, 2022 at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay at a black tie gala.

The Creativity in Practice & Education Award was established to recognize and encourage interprofessional programs, projects, and models which focus on the improvement of health care.  This year’s award went to Thomas Jefferson University’s Complex Care Curriculum – 3Cs.

To creatively address patients with complex health and social needs, which comprise roughly 5% of the patient population and account for 50% of the costs, the Jefferson Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education at TJU launched the 3Cs in the Fall of 2020. This longitudinal curriculum draws upon best practices from existing complex care clinical models. The 3Cs builds on and integrates existing interprofessional programs at JCIPE, including the Health Mentors Program and Student Hotspotting, to create one innovative, cohesive continuum which incrementally builds competencies in collaborative practice and complex care.

A key aim for the 3Cs is to enable students to develop competency in interprofessional collaborative practice based on the Interprofessional Education Collaborative core competencies. The 3Cs tracks impact on patient and healthcare system outcomes.

The National Academies of Practice Interprofessional Group Recognition award is bestowed upon a group who has made enduring contributions to interprofessional practice and education.  This year’s winner was the University at Buffalo’s Interprofessional Education Leadership Team.

This outstanding team of talented faculty is dedicated to the advancement of interprofessional collaborative practice and education. The UB IPE Program currently serves over 2,500 students in 15 health professions programs.  

Students are taught to move out of their professional silos with introductory, exposure level, immersion level, and competency IPE learning experiences. The team has used innovative instructional design strategies to develop, implement, and assess unique experiential learning activities that span the classroom to the community and healthcare settings. The UB IPE Leadership Team has also shown time and again their commitment to the advancement of IPE and IPCP through their research, including their peer-reviewed publications and presentations.

The National Academies of Practice Patient Advocacy Award recognizes a patient or care partner whose lived experience transformed them, and they in turn are transforming healthcare to enhance the well-being of others. This year’s award was presented to Dr. Anita Gupta.

Gupta is an accomplished physician and brings an international voice for stakeholders including patients, physicians, policymakers, and non-profit organizations. She emphasizes that doctors need to take a step back and look at situations through the eyes of the patient. 

Gupta brings her own perspective from her personal patient journey as a rare disease survivor and uses it as a positive platform to improve both health systems and the patient journey. The rare disease community is fortunate to have a physician so dedicated to creating a “voice” for patients by leading the way with her own example and being actively involved in initiatives that leverage patient advocates, industry and the healthcare community.

To recognize an early to mid-career professional working in interprofessional care, serving as an exemplar, and demonstrating future promise in contributing to interprofessional practice and to our association, the National Academies of Practice created a new award this year – the Emerging Interprofessional National Academies of Practice Member of the Year. And the winner of this inaugural award was Dr. Laurel Abbruzzese.

Abbruzzese was inducted as a NAP Distinguished Fellow and Scholar in 2017 and is an active member of the organization. She has contributed extensively to interprofessional education and practice within the NAP Physical Therapy Academy, on NAP committees such as Forum Planning and Scholarship, and currently serves as the Chair of the NAP Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force.

She serves as the Associate Professor of Rehabilitation and Regenerative Medicine (Physical Therapy) at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and is a champion for marginalized persons and populations in all of her collaborative work. Abbruzzese serves as an exemplar champion of interprofessional practice and has future promise in advocating for collaborative initiatives in health care education and practice.

The distinguished Nicholas A. Cummings Highest Distinguished Fellow Award is named for NAP’s founder and is bestowed upon a member of the National Academies of Practice who has demonstrated outstanding or extraordinary contributions to interprofessional healthcare. The 2022 Cummings Highest Distinguished Fellow Award was presented to Michelle Troseth.

During her presidency of the National Academies of Practice in 2017 and 2018, she helped establish and lead the organization’s Interprofessional & Organizational (I&O) Initiative which focused on intentional and strategic growth for the organization. She has demonstrated that she is an accomplished leader with great vision, strategy, interpersonal skills, and passion for interprofessional healthcare. She challenged NAP leadership to recognize and embrace the ‘and’ and ‘both’ polarities of our organization in observing our honorific past and leveraging our unique position to advance interprofessional healthcare in the future.

The National Academies of Practice made great strides under her watch.  It was her vision of bringing NAP from an obscure organization to a true leader in interprofessional care that spring boarded many of the initiatives that are still in place within our organization today.

As Past President, Troseth led the organization’s 40th anniversary celebration and continues to serve as a confidante and colleague to current leadership. She has created strategic partnerships for maximum impact and set strategic directions and actions for growing NAP.

Troseth has distinguished herself as a dedicated health professional and collaborative leader through her words and actions over the past 3 decades. She is highly regarded as a scholar, author, speaker and thought leader across Nursing, Interprofessional Education, and Collaborative Practice. Her dedication to quality improvement in health care has made a palpable impact on systems, clinicians, patients, communities, and certainly to this association.

Many within NAP have benefited from Troseth’s leadership skills and have sought her advice and guidance over the years. 

And finally, the NAP Optometry Academy bestowed their distinguished James A. Boucher award.  The Boucher Award is given to a member who has demonstrated exemplary contributions to the profession of optometry and healthcare field and has upheld the mission of NAP to advance science and the concept of interdisciplinary healthcare.  This year’s winner was Dr. Glen T. Steele. 

For more information on NAP, visit www.NAPractice.org.

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