The GRIP Promotion Office is operated jointly with the Center for Interprofessional Education and Research, Graduate School of Nursing, Chiba University. The Chiba University GRIP Promotion Committee plays a central role in managing the program in collaboration with the GRIP Promotion Committee, which consists of Symbiosis International University (India), University of Leicester (UK), and Monash University (Australia). An external evaluation committee meets once a year to evaluate and improve the program.
Chiba University’s School of Nursing started an international student exchange program with the Symbiosis International (Deemed University) (SIU) and its School of Nursing (SCON) through the Symbiosis Center for International Education Center (SCIE) in 2019.
This student exchange program corresponds to Global Health and Nursing II (two credits) and is an international exchange program that focuses on the relations between sociocultural and economic backgrounds and nursing/medical care in Japan and India. Global Health and Nursing II is an elective course at Chiba University’s School of Nursing. In 2019, seven second- and third-year students from Chiba University’s School of Nursing traveled to the field and visited local medical institutions and the SCON. They received lectures on the current state of practice and nursing education and exchanged opinions with faculty members and students of the SCON. In particular, this exchange program with SIU is a learning program in which students see and consider the relations between India’s unique health care system and its sociocultural and economic background. Community health workers, such as those in traditional medicine and ASHA, play an active role in the health care system. In addition, SIU provides an environment in which students can interact by arranging assistants as buddies, which has been well received by the students participating in the program. The students have also reported the achievement of their academic goals.
Since 2020, travel has been made difficult owing to the spread of COVID-19. However, an online international exchange program has been held once or twice a year. Nine, six, and seven students attended and completed the program in 2020, 2021, and in the summer of 2022, respectively. Although delivered online, the program included yoga practice, in addition to lectures and exchanges of opinions with student buddies. The content on yoga, a traditional and representative health method, has been deemed fulfilling. SIU provides international exchange programs not only for the School of Nursing but also for students from other faculties in the general education curriculum at Chiba University.
The University of Leicester (UL) has an interdepartmental agreement with Chiba University Graduate School of Medicine and School of Medicine. In 2005, a faculty member from the University of Leicester visited Chiba University for the first time; since then, the two universities have continued regular exchanges. From the planning stage of the Inohana IPE program at Chiba University, we developed the program through consultations with UL faculty members. In 2019, as a part of a joint Inohana IPE class, two fourth-year nursing students and one sixth-year medical student from Chiba University were dispatched to the UL as a team. The local program in the UK was a curriculum called the integrated care block (ICB), in which students learn about integrated care. The UK’s ICB is also a model of Japan’s community-based integrated care system. I participated in lectures and clinical training with others. This ICB at the UL aims to cultivate the ability to assess and care for people with chronic and complex health needs who live in the community, such as older adults and people with disabilities. This IPE program is aimed at providing students with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to work effectively as members of an interprofessional team in the community. The ICB also includes on-the-job training in clinics serving the needy and homeless in impoverished areas. In addition, the study content includes modules on comparing and considering socioeconomic backgrounds and related policies.
This ICB program is intended to cultivate the ability of interprofessional teams to assess and diagnose problems holistically for community residents. Its content can be said to be the foundation of the GRIP program.
The dispatch of Chiba students to the UL has been put on hold since 2020 owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. Chiba University is preparing its resumption as a part of the GRIP program.
Monash University has had an interuniversity agreement with Chiba University since 1994. In 2012, the faculty from the Interprofessional Education and Research Center affiliated with the Graduate School of Nursing, Chiba University, visited Monash University to observe the IPE program. At the time, Chiba University’s representatives observed students’ clinics, digital medical examinations, and e-learning systems, and used them as references for improving the Inohana IPE program.
In addition, as a part of the global IPE program in 2020, the IPERC planned student exchanges between Monash University and Chiba University. However, this was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. University representatives are continuing online exchanges on nursing activities in Australia, such as the on-demand lectures by Monash University faculty members.