Ibikunle seeks to impact holistic care in OACA internship

Headshot of Adebayo Ibikunle

Adebayo Ibikunle, DDS PASS ’25, will spend the year as a 2023-2024 Office of Academic Clinical Affairs (OACA) Interprofessional Intern, creating resources on stress management and mindfulness with the Mobile Health Initiative.

The OACA Interprofessional Internship brings together sixteen learners from the health sciences to “learn and lead together, solve problems for clinical partners, develop real world working relationships and advance interprofessional education and practice,” according to the office’s website.

An “Unrelenting learner, devoted public health enthusiast, and a strong believer in the synchrony between oral health and overall wellbeing,” Ibikunle fell in love with dentistry due to the way it connects science and art and the impact it has on overall health. “It is amazing how much oral health issues affect population quality of life, and indeed systemic health,” he said. “Having lived and served among populations with poor access to oral healthcare, studying dentistry offered a way to mitigate the situation.”

Ibikunle believes fiercely in whole-health focused care—so when he discovered the OACA internship, it seemed like the perfect fit.

“I am acutely aware of the fact that healthcare is better delivered when holistic care is offered,” he said. “This can only be achieved when all arms of the healthcare system work seamlessly with the patient being the central focus of all activities. For this to occur, interprofessional symbiosis is of paramount importance.”

Because of this, Ibikunle saw the internship as “a chance to improve my knowledge of  healthcare-driven interprofessional relationships and how they can be applied to everyday care delivery.” He is excited to grow as a provider throughout the experience.

As an intern, Ibikunle will work alongside fellow intern and medical school student Sara Busche on a project with the Mobile Health Initiative. The two will produce resource guides on stress, anxiety and mindfulness, which providers can share with patients.

“The goal is for this guide to help identify individuals in need of assistance, resulting in a prompt referral to the appropriate experts,” he explained. “With the high prevalence of anxiety and stress-related mental health issues, it is imperative to do more to address the situation. It is exciting to be part of the multi-pronged approach being used to mitigate this.”

Given the impact stress and anxiety can have on an individual’s life, Ibikunle hopes these resources can have a real impact and improve patients’ lives.

“I hope to be able to provide accessible tools aimed at empowering people to develop healthy habits and stress and anxiety reducing tactics,” he said. “Putting helpful tools in the hands of the population reduces the barriers we face. I also hope to strengthen my team-building and professional networking abilities, which I believe are central to achieving efficient delivery of holistic healthcare.”

Ibikunle looks forward to a year of learning from fellow interns and professionals, and having the opportunity to collaborate across disciplines.

“I am one who believes strongly that learning is living,” he said. “Living is best done in collaboration, and collaboration is essential for efficient healthcare delivery and better standards of living.”