AUSTIN, Texas — The University of Texas at Austin continues its outstanding leadership in interprofessional education. The Center for Health Interprofessional Practice and Education (Center for Health IPE) was launched with approval and start-up funds from the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost. The Center for Health IPE joins other state and national IPE centers to prepare health professionals with the expertise to become collaborative health care leaders advancing person-centered care and collaborative practice.

The Center for Health IPE serves as the university’s central body to promote innovative learning experiences, disseminate best practices, convene key health and education stakeholders, and champion impact-driven scholarship to transform health professions education through collaborative interprofessional practice.

Prior to launch, faculty champions spearheaded innovative interprofessional learning opportunities in health programs across campus. These efforts were strengthened through Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) program grants and bolstered by Dell Medical School’s emphasis on IPE as a part of its vision.

The four deans of the university’s health professions schools — M. Lynn Crismon, Pharm.D. (College of Pharmacy), Clay Johnston, M.D., Ph.D. (Dell Medical School), Alexa Stuifbergen, Ph.D., RN (School of Nursing), and Luis Zayas, Ph.D. (Steve Hicks School of Social Work) — stressed the need for a central IPE body on campus. They worked collaboratively with faculty advocates at each school to see the Center for Health IPE come to fruition.

“The Center for Health IPE aligns with UT Austin’s core purpose of transforming lives for the benefit of society by creating a collaborative health care culture that is focused on providing person-centered, interprofessional team-based care,” said Dean Crismon.

These deans continue to provide executive oversight for the center, with Dean Crismon serving as the administrative dean on behalf of the four health professions schools.

The primary faculty who championed the creation of the Center for Health IPE are Barbara Jones, Ph.D., MSW (Steve Hicks School of Social Work), John Luk, M.D. (Dell Medical School), Gayle Timmerman, Ph.D., RN (School of Nursing), and Veronica Young, Pharm.D., M.P.H. (College of Pharmacy). These faculty serve as the core members of the Center for Health IPE’s Steering Committee where they advise on center priorities.

Young was named inaugural director of the Center for Health IPE and is supported by Lauren El-Assad, LCSW, who serves as program manager. They are establishing key foundational steps for the center to promote resources, consultation, programming, and services to connect health interprofessional efforts across campus and advance collaborative practice and education.

About the Center for Health IPE
The UT Austin Center for Health Interprofessional Practice and Education’s mission is to lead innovative interprofessional education, practice, and scholarship that advances collaborative person-centered health care and population-oriented health. The Center for Health IPE is housed out of the School of Nursing at 1710 Red River Street in Austin, Texas. Veronica Young may be reached at and 512.475.9755. Lauren El-Assad may be reached at and 512.471.9606. Learn more at

Posted April 20, 2018.