Interprofessional Collaborative Partnerships to Create Healthy Environments: Understanding Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

Friday, 17 March 2017: 4:05 PM

Ann M. Mitchell, PhD, MS, BS1
Irene Kane, PhD1
Kathryn Puskar, DrPH, MN1
Holly Hagle, PhD2
Dawn Lindsay, PhD2
(1)School of Nursing, School of Nursing, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
(2)Institute for Research, Education, and Training in Addictions, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with Practice Implementation Centers (PICs) and Discipline Specific Workgroups (DSWs) have embarked on an interprofessional collaborative practice project to enhance professional's clinical skill sets for the prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs), by employing the expanded use of alcohol screening and brief intervention. This innovative collaboration entails work from 6 disciplines and numerous national partners.

Maternal prenatal alcohol use is one of the leading preventable causes of birth defects and developmental disabilities (Hartje, Edwards, & Edney, 2015). Children exposed to alcohol during fetal development can suffer a wide array of disorders, from subtle changes in IQ and behaviors to profound intellectual disability, known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) (Hartje, Edwards, & Edney, 2015). Nurses can play a vital role in the prevention of FASDs by identifying women consuming alcohol which may put them at risk for an alcohol exposed pregnancy through simple and direct screening. Since the adverse effects of prenatal alcohol exposure constitute a continuum of disabilities clinical guidelines for diagnosing FASDs were recently updated (Hoyme, 2016).

This interprofessional collaboration vested in an evidence-based environmental scan supports the enhancement of team-based care of patients to improve population health outcomes (IPE, 2016). The production of diverse resources to support interprofessional collaboration to address alcohol screening and brief intervention through the development of online courses, comprehensive website resources, unique trainings, and the development of champions. Examples of these collaborative tools, which have been developed, will be highlighted for the group in this interactive session. This interprofessional national network and discipline specific working groups is providing evidence-based materials for the clinical work environment for any practicing nurse who advocates a healthy lifestyle environment for their clients. An example of clinical integration into a national organization will be highlighted and discussed with the participants.