Effect of a Novel Interdisciplinary Teaching Program in the Care-continuum on Medical Student Knowledge and Self-Efficacy.
OBJECTIVES: Medical students report that they receive inadequate training in different levels of care, including care transitions to and from post-acute (PA) and long-term care (LTC). The authors implemented the Medical Students as Teachers in Extended Care (MedTEC) program as an educational innovation at the Cleveland Clinic to address training in the care-continuum, as well as the new medical student and physician competencies in PA/LTC. DESIGN: MedTEC is a 7-hour interactive program that supplements standard geriatric didactics during the medical student primary care rotation. This study evaluated the performance of the program in improving medical student knowledge and attitudes on levels and transitions of care. SETTING: The program occurs in a community facility that includes subacute/skilled nursing, assisted living, and nursing home care. PARTICIPANTS: Five to 8 students completing their primary care rotation at the Cleveland Clinic are required to participate in the MedTEC program each month. INTERVENTION: The program includes up to 3 hours of interactive discussion and opportunities to meet facility staff, residents, and patients. The highlight of the program is a student-led in-service for facility staff. MEASUREMENTS: With institutional review board approval as an exempt educational research project, pre- and postactivity surveys assessed self-efficacy and knowledge regarding levels of care for students who participated in the program and a student comparison group. The post-program knowledge test also was administered to hospital medicine staff, and test performance was compared with medical students who participated in the MedTEC program. RESULTS: Between October 2011 and December 2013, approximately 100 students participated in 20 sessions of MedTEC. All students reported improved self-efficacy and attitudes regarding care of older adults and care transition management. Mean percentage correct on the knowledge test increased significantly from 59.8% to 71.2% (P = .004) for the MedTEC participants but not for the comparison group students (63.1%-58.3%, P = .47). There was no significant difference in mean percentage correct on the post-program knowledge test between MedTEC medical students and hospitalists (71.0% versus 70.3%, P = .86). Students led 8 in-service sessions for facility staff on various topics relating to the care of older adults in PA/LTC. CONCLUSION: The MedTEC program appears to be a successful innovation in medical student education on levels of care. It could serve as a model for building competency of health professionals on managing care transitions and determining appropriate levels of care for older adults.
Lathia, A; Rothberg, M; Heflin, M; Nottingham, K; Messinger-Rapport, B
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