Today, the use of herbal medicine for primary healthcare has increased considerably. Since local pharmacists graduate with little knowledge on herbal medicine, the majority are ill-equipped to provide pharmaceutical advice.
To develop and evaluate a herbal medicine formulary to aid healthcare professionals (HCPs) in the prescribing, dispensing and counselling responsibilities.
Settings and Design
Methods and Material
Monographs on all herbal substances available locally were compiled into a formulary. The formulary was then distributed to all, 216, local pharmacies. Subsequently, a questionnaire was distributed to 55 pharmacists and 10 general practitioners (GPs).
Statistical analysis used
Descriptive statistical analysis.
A total of 177 herbal monographs have been compiled and 612 herbal products listed. Thirty HCPs participated in the questionnaire. The formulary was found to be useful by all participants with 19 claiming to use it frequently and 7 quite frequently. Participants (n = 30) agree that the information contained within the formulary was found to be useful (26), the formulary helped them learn which HMPs are present in the local market (29), the formulary is user friendly (27), information included is up-to-date and well referenced (29) and that there is the need for a formulary of this kind in Malta (28).
The formulary was found to be a useful tool for HCPs leading to high quality, evidence-based prescribing together with enhanced monitoring and improved patient care.
Formulary; Healthcare; Herbal medicine; Pharmacist; Usefulness
To evaluate the ability of third- and fourth-year pharmacy students to identify clinically significant drug-drug interactions (DDIs)
A questionnaire designed to measure DDI knowledge was disseminated to fourth-year pharmacy students in a school of pharmacy. A second questionnaire was distributed to third-year pharmacy students in 2 schools of pharmacy (schools A and B) and re-administered to students in 1 of the schools 1 year later.
Class of 2005 fourth-year pharmacy students correctly categorized an average of 52% ± 13% DDI pairs on the first questionnaire. Third-year pharmacy students at schools A and B correctly categorized an average of 61% ± 18% and 66% ± 15% of DDI pairs, respectively. The average percentage of correct responses for fourth-year students from the class of 2007 was 65% (± 17%).
Pharmacy students' ability to identify important DDIs is far from optimal, even after completing experiential requirements.
Over the last 10 years the number of medical students choosing family medicine as a career has steadily declined. Studies have demonstrated that career preference at the time that students begin medical school may be significantly associated with their ultimate career choice. We sought to identify the career preferences students have at entry to medical school and the factors related to family medicine as a first-choice career option.
A questionnaire was administered to students entering medical school programs at the time of entry at the University of Calgary (programs beginning in 2001 and 2002), University of British Columbia (2001 and 2002) and University of Alberta (2002). Students were asked to indicate their top 3 career choices and to rank the importance of 25 variables with respect to their career choice. Factor analysis was performed on the variables. Reliability of the factor scores was estimated using Cronbach's alpha coefficients; biserial correlations between the factors and career choice were also calculated. A logistic regression was performed using career choice (family v. other) as the criterion variable and the factors plus demographic characteristics as predictor variables.
Of 583 students, 519 (89%) completed the questionnaire. Only 20% of the respondents identified family medicine as their first career option, and about half ranked family medicine in their top 3 choices. Factor analysis produced 5 factors (medical lifestyle, societal orientation, prestige, hospital orientation and varied scope of practice) that explained 52% of the variance in responses. The 5 factors demonstrated acceptable internal consistency and correlated in the expected direction with the choice of family medicine. Logistic regression revealed that students who identified family medicine as their first choice tended to be older, to be concerned about medical lifestyle and to have lived in smaller communities at the time of completing high school; they were also less likely to be hospital oriented. Moreover, students who chose family medicine were much more likely to demonstrate a societal orientation and to desire a varied scope of practice.
Several factors appear to drive students toward family medicine, most notably having a societal orientation and a desire for a varied scope of practice. If the factors that influence medical students to choose family medicine can be identified accurately, then it may be possible to use such a model to change medical school admission policies so that the number of students choosing to enter family medicine can be increased.
This study aims to examine knowledge and attitudes towards Complementary and Alternative Medicine among medical students in Turkey, and find out whether they want to be trained in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM).
A cross-sectional study was carried out between October and December 2010 among medical students. Data were collected from a total of seven medical schools.
The study included 943 medical students. The most well known methods among the students were herbal treatment (81.2 %), acupuncture (80.8 %), hypnosis (78.8 %), body-based practices including massage (77 %) and meditation (65.2 %), respectively. Acupuncture, aromatherapy, herbal treatment and meditation were better known among female participants compared to males (p < 0.05). Females and first year students, generally had more positive attitudes. A larger proportion of female students compared to male students reported that a doctor should be knowledgeable about CAM (p = 0.001), and this knowledge would be helpful in their future professional lives (p = 0.015). Positive attitudes towards and willingness to receive training declined as the number of years spent in the faculty of medicine increased.
Majority of the medical students were familiar with the CAM methods widely used in Turkey, while most of them had positive attitudes towards CAM as well as willingness to receive training on the subject, and they were likely to recommend CAM methods to their patients in their future professional lives. With its gradual scientific development and increasing popularity, there appears a need for a coordinated policy in integrating CAM into the medical curriculum, by taking expectations of and feedback from medical students into consideration in setting educational standards.
Medical students have consistently expressed interest in learning about alternative healing modalities, especially herbal and natural products. To fill this void in medical education at our institution, a novel elective was developed and implemented for fourth year medical students. This herbal/natural product course uses guest lecturers, classroom presentations, and active learning mechanisms that include experiential rotations, case-based learning, and team-based learning to increase student knowledge of herbal/natural product safety and efficacy.
Knowledge outcomes were evaluated via administration of a pre- and post-course test (paired student t-test). End-of-course evaluations (Likert-type questions and narrative responses) were used to assess student opinion of knowledge and skills imparted by the elective and overall course content (mean, standard deviation).
Over three academic years, 23 students have enrolled in this elective. More than 60% of participants have been female and nearly half of the students (43%) have pursued residencies in primary care. Completion of the course significantly increased student knowledge of common herbal/natural product mechanisms, uses, adverse effects, and drug-interactions as determined by a pre- and post-course knowledge assessment (45% ± 10% versus 78% ± 6%; p < 0.0001). The course was highly rated by enrollees (overall course quality, 4.6 of 5.0 ± 0.48) who appreciated the variety of activities to which they were exposed and the open classroom discussions that resulted. While students tended to view some alternative medical systems with skepticism, they still believed it was valuable to learn what these modalities encompass.
Development and implementation of a herbal/natural product elective that engages undergraduate medical students through active learning mechanisms and critical analysis of the literature has proven effective in increasing knowledge outcomes and is deemed to be a valuable curricular addition by student participants. In the future, it will be of interest to explore mechanisms for expanding the course to reach a larger number of students within the time, financial, and logistical constraints that currently exist.
Complementary and alternative medicine; Dietary supplements; Herbal; Integrated therapy; Natural product; Undergraduate medical education
Objective. To determine whether a high-fidelity simulation technique compared with lecture would produce greater improvement in advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) knowledge, confidence, and overall satisfaction with the training method.
Design. This sequential, parallel-group, crossover trial randomized students into 2 groups distinguished by the sequence of teaching technique delivered for ACLS instruction (ie, classroom lecture vs high-fidelity simulation exercise).
Assessment. Test scores on a written examination administered at baseline and after each teaching technique improved significantly from baseline in all groups but were highest when lecture was followed by simulation. Simulation was associated with a greater degree of overall student satisfaction compared with lecture. Participation in a simulation exercise did not improve pharmacy students’ knowledge of ACLS more than attending a lecture, but it was associated with improved student confidence in skills and satisfaction with learning and application.
Conclusions. College curricula should incorporate simulation to complement but not replace lecture for ACLS education.
advanced cardiac life support; simulation; pharmacy education
Herbal products are readily available over the counter in health food stores and are often perceived to be without risk. The current Canadian adverse event reporting system suffers from severe underreporting, resulting in a scarcity of safety data on herbal products. Twelve health food store personnel in the Greater Toronto Area were interviewed about their responses to herbal product–related adverse reactions. They generally fostered customer loyalty by offering generous return policies, which included collecting contact information to be sent to the manufacturers with the returned product. Thus, despite the public's lack of knowledge about the formal reporting system, adverse reaction information was directed to manufacturers whenever it resulted in a product return. The relationship between health food stores, industry and Health Canada provides a new opportunity to facilitate adverse event reporting. Additional information could be collected during the return process, and educational initiatives could be implemented to augment current post-market surveillance procedures for herbal products.
To develop a measure of pharmacists’ patient counseling on herbal and dietary supplements.
A systematic process was used for item generation, testing, and validation of a measure of pharmacists counseling on herbal and dietary supplements. Because a pharmacist-patient encounter may or may not identify an indication for taking an herb or dietary supplement, the instrument was bifurcated into 2 distinct components: (1) patient counseling in general; and (2) patient counseling related to herbal and dietary supplements.
The instrument demonstrated high reliability and desirable construct validity. After adjusting for item difficulty, we found that pharmacists tended to provide more general patient counseling than counseling related to herbal and dietary supplements.
This instrument can be applied to assess the quality of counseling provided by pharmacists and pharmacy students, and the outcomes of pharmacist and pharmacy student education on herbal and dietary supplements.
patient counseling; instrument; herbal and dietary supplements; pharmacist; student
The relevance of medicinal chemistry to pharmacy practice has been questioned by many pharmacy educators as more emphasis has been placed on linking clinical knowledge and practice to pharmacy student educational outcomes. Faculty teaching in medicinal chemistry and other biomedical and pharmaceutical science courses have embraced this challenge. Various teaching methods and approaches within medicinal chemistry that emphasize application of this knowledge have been sought to improve the usefulness of this scientific discipline to the future careers of students. The newly revised ACPE guidelines and standards have reemphasized the role of the sciences in the curriculum. With this mandate, it is essential that all science faculty members adjust the way they teach to meet the new desired outcomes for pharmacy graduates. This manuscript describes an instructional model for teaching medicinal chemistry explicitly designed to meet these outcomes. A process of collaboration between experienced pharmacy faculty scholars was used to derive this approach. Pedagogy for cognitive and affective learning was incorporated. A case study using a representative drug class is presented to illustrate this model.
medicinal chemistry; clinical relevance; ACPE guidelines; ACPE standards; therapeutic decision-making; clinical reasoning
Objective. To evaluate the level of competency and knowledge about health disparities among third-year doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students at 2 Florida public colleges of pharmacy and to explore the demographic correlates of these variables.
Methods. A cross-sectional survey study design was used to collect data from participants.
Results. The students had low health-disparities knowledge and moderate skills in dealing with sociocultural issues and cross-cultural encounters. Speaking a language(s) other than English and having exposure to cultural-competency instruction were the demographic variables found to be most significantly associated with clinical cultural competency and/or knowledge of health disparities.
Conclusions. Clinical cultural competency and health-disparities instruction may not be adequately incorporated into the pharmacy school curricula in the institutions studied. Relevant education and training are necessary to enhance cultural competency among pharmacy students.
cultural competence; health disparities; student pharmacist; curriculum
Knowledge & attitudes of healthcare providers (HCP) have significant impact on frequency with which vaccines are offered & accepted but many HCP are ill equipped to make informed recommendations about vaccine merits & risks. We performed an assessment of the educational needs of trainees regarding immunization and used the information thus ascertained to develop multi-faceted, evaluable, educational tools which can be integrated into formal education curricula.
(i) A questionnaire was sent to all Canadian nursing, medical & pharmacy schools to assess immunization-related curriculum content (ii) A 77-item web-based, validated questionnaire was emailed to final-year students in medicine, nursing, & pharmacy at two universities in Nova Scotia, Canada to assess knowledge, attitudes, & behaviors reflecting current immunization curriculum.
The curriculum review yielded responses from 18%, 48%, & 56% of medical, nursing, & pharmacy schools, respectively. Time spent on immunization content varied substantially between & within disciplines from <1 to >50 hrs. Most schools reported some content regarding vaccine preventable diseases, immunization practice & clinical skills but there was considerable variability and fewer schools had learning objectives or formal evaluation in these areas. 74% of respondents didn't feel comfortable discussing vaccine side effects with parents/patients & only 21% felt they received adequate teaching regarding immunization during training.
Important gaps were identified in the knowledge of graduating nursing, medical, & pharmacy trainees regarding vaccine indications/contraindications, adverse events & safety. The national curriculum review revealed wide variability in immunization curriculum content & evaluation. There is clearly a need for educators to assess current curricula and adapt existing educational resources such as the Immunization Competencies for Health Professionals in Canada.
To evaluate a pharmacy student service focused on patient coronary heart disease (CHD) risk assessment.
Fourth-year pharmacy students offered a CHD risk assessment service at 5 physicians' offices as part of ambulatory care advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE). Patient acceptance of the service was assessed using a satisfaction survey instrument.
Fifty-seven students educated 311 patients about CHD risk. Of the 258 patients who completed the satisfaction survey, 245 (95%) reported that the service was helpful in understanding CHD risk, and 79 (31%) learned of a personal CHD risk factor of which they were not previously aware. Student knowledge was assessed using a multiple-choice pretest and posttest focused on CHD knowledge recall. Students' test scores improved from pretest to posttest (mean 51.6 % ± 1.1 vs. 64. 8% ± 1.0. respectively; p = 0.01).
A CHD risk assessment service provided by APPE students in ambulatory care settings was educational for both students and patients.
coronary heart disease; ambulatory care; advanced pharmacy practice experience; clinical service
To compare the test-taking skills and abilities (testwiseness) of Canadian senior-level pharmacy students with those of international pharmacy graduates.
A 20-item testwiseness questionnaire was developed and administered to 102 participants: 35 senior-level pharmacy students, 34 international pharmacy graduates, and 34 practicing pharmacists who served as a control group.
Mean testwiseness scores indicated significant differences in performance between senior-level pharmacy students and international pharmacy graduates. Testwiseness deficiencies of international pharmacy graduates were particularly severe in domains requiring discerning use of English language.
Differences in testwiseness appear to exist between Canadian senior-level pharmacy students and international pharmacy graduates. The genesis and implications of these differences must be evaluated further in order to determine whether testwiseness affects learning, professional development, or clinical practice.
examination; testing; test-taking strategies; assessment; international pharmacy graduates
To determine pharmacy faculty members' and students’ attitudes and perceptions regarding the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
A survey was used to obtain data on the following information concerning CAM: general attitudes, perceived barriers to use, training received and desired, personal use, and information sources used.
In general, attitudes of pharmacy faculty members and students towards CAM were positive. Lack of evidence for CAM practices was considered the greatest barrier to the use of CAM by faculty members and students. Many CAM therapies were perceived to be effective. A high percentage of students desire more training in the areas of herbal medicine and nutritional supplements. Faculty members and students believe that CAM should be included in the curriculum.
General attitudes towards CAM are positive among pharmacy faculty members and students, and most believe that CAM should be taught in the pharmacy curriculum. More resources and training of faculty members may be necessary.
complementary and alternative medicine; attitudes; students; faculty
Objectives. To evaluate pharmacy students' drug-drug interaction (DDI) knowledge retention over 1 year and to determine whether presenting DDI vignettes increased knowledge retention.
Methods. A knowledge assessment tool was distributed to fourth-year pharmacy students before and after completing a DDI educational session. The questionnaire was re-administered after 1 year to assess knowledge retention. During the intervening year, students had the option of presenting DDI case vignettes to preceptors and other health professionals as part of their advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs).
Results. Thirty-four of 78 pharmacy students completed both the post-intervention and 1-year follow-up assessments. Students’ knowledge of 4 DDI pairs improved, knowledge of 3 DDI pairs did not change, and knowledge of the remainder of DDI pairs decreased. Average scores of the 18 students who completed all tests and presented at least 1 vignette during their APPEs were higher on the 1-year follow-up assessment than students who did not, suggesting greater DDI knowledge retention (p = 0.04).
Conclusion. Although pharmacy students’ overall DDI knowledge decreased in the year following an educational session, those who presented vignettes to health professionals retained more DDI knowledge, particularly on those DDIs for which they gave presentations. Other methods to enhance pharmacy students’ retention of DDI knowledge of clinically important DDIs are needed.
drug-drug interaction; assessment
Objectives. To assess Pakistani pharmacy students’ perceptions of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), the frequency with which they use CAM, and barriers to use of CAM.
Method. A CAM health belief questionnaire was administered to 595 students enrolled in a 5-year doctor of pharmacy program (PharmD) in Pakistan.
Results. Attitudes of students towards CAM were positive. Lack of evidence supporting CAM practices was considered to be the major barrier toward more students using CAM. A majority of students (79%) agreed that clinical care should integrate conventional medicine and CAM practices. Many CAM-based therapies, such as dietary supplements, massage, herbal medicines, and homoeopathic medicines were used by the students. Significant gender differences in attitude were observed, with male students having more conservative attitudes toward CAM use. A high percentage of students desired more training in CAM.
Conclusions. Pakistani students exhibited positive attitudes about the value of CAM and most felt that CAM should be included in the PharmD curriculum.
pharmacy students; complementary and alternative medicine; perception; attitudes; Pakistan
With the increased usage of CAM worldwide comes the demand for its integration into health professional education. However, the incorporation of CAM into health professional curricula is handled quite differently by different institutions and countries. Furthermore, the evaluation of CAM curricula is complicated because students' ability to learn about CAM may be influenced by factors such as student's prior knowledge and motivation, together with the perceptions and attitudes of clinical preceptors.
The study aimed to describe the attitudes, perceptions and beliefs of second, third and fourth year pharmacy students towards complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) and to explore factors that might affect attitudes such as learning, preceptors and placements.
Pharmacy students from a University in South East Queensland, Australia participated in the study. The study consisted of a cross-sectional survey (n = 110) and semi-structured interviews (n = 9).
The overall response rate for the survey was 75%, namely 50% (36/72) for second year, 77.3% (34/44) for third year and 97.6% (40/41) for fourth year students. Overall, 95.5% of pharmacy students believe that pharmacists should be able to advise patients about CAM and most (93.7%) have used CAM prior to course enrolment. Students' attitudes to CAM are influenced by the use of CAM by family, friends and self, CAM training, lecturers and to a lesser degree by preceptors. The majority of pharmacy students (89.2%) perceive education about CAM as a core and integral part of their professional degree and favour it over an additional postgraduate degree. However, they see a greater need for education in complementary medicines (such as herbal medicines, vitamins and minerals) than for education in complementary therapies (such as acupuncture, meditation and bio-magnetism). Knowledge and educational input rationalised rather than marginalised students' attitudes towards CAM.
Pharmacy students perceive education about CAM as a core and integral part of their professional degree. Students' attitudes towards CAM can be influenced by learning, lecturers, preceptors and practice experience. The content and focus of CAM education has to be further investigated and tailored to meet the professional needs of our future health professionals.
Objective. To assess course instructors’ and students’ perceptions of the Educating Pharmacy Students and Pharmacists to Improve Quality (EPIQ) curriculum.
Methods. Seven colleges and schools of pharmacy that were using the EPIQ program in their curricula agreed to participate in the study. Five of the 7 collected student retrospective pre- and post-intervention questionnaires. Changes in students’ perceptions were evaluated to assess their relationships with demographics and course variables. Instructors who implemented the EPIQ program at each of the 7 colleges and schools were also asked to complete a questionnaire.
Results. Scores on all questionnaire items indicated improvement in students’ perceived knowledge of quality improvement. The university the students attended, completion of a class project, and length of coverage of material were significantly related to improvement in the students’ scores. Instructors at all colleges and schools felt the EPIQ curriculum was a strong program that fulfilled the criteria for quality improvement and medication error reduction education.
Conclusion The EPIQ program is a viable, turnkey option for colleges and schools of pharmacy to use in teaching students about quality improvement.
quality improvement; medication error; pharmacy education; pharmacy student; assessment; curriculum
The use of herbal medicines among pregnant women in Nigeria has not been widely studied.
Opinion of 595 pregnant women in three geopolitical zones in Nigeria on the use of herbal medicines, safety on usage, knowledge of potential effects of herbal remedies on the fetus and potential benefits or harms that may be derived from combining herbal remedies with conventional therapies were obtained using a structured questionnaire between September 2007 and March 2008. Descriptive statistics and Fisher's exact tests were used at 95% confidence level to evaluate the data obtained. Level of significance was set at p < 0.05.
More than two-third of respondents [67.5%] had used herbal medicines in crude forms or as pharmaceutical prepackaged dosage forms, with 74.3% preferring self-prepared formulations. Almost 30% who were using herbal medicine at the time of the study believed that the use of herbal medicines during pregnancy is safe. Respondents' reasons for taking herbal medications were varied and included reasons such as herbs having better efficacy than conventional medicines [22.4%], herbs being natural, are safer to use during pregnancy than conventional medicines [21.1%], low efficacy of conventional medicines [19.7%], easier access to herbal medicines [11.2%], traditional and cultural belief in herbal medicines to cure many illnesses [12.5%], and comparatively low cost of herbal medicines [5.9%].
Over half the respondents, 56.6% did not support combining herbal medicines with conventional drugs to forestall drug-herb interaction. About 33.4% respondents believed herbal medicines possess no adverse effects while 181 [30.4%] were of the opinion that adverse/side effects of some herbal medicines could be dangerous. Marital status, geopolitical zones, and educational qualification of respondents had statistically significant effects on respondents views on side effects of herbal medicines [p < 0.05)] while only geopolitical zones and educational qualifications seemed to have influence on respondents' opinion on the harmful effects of herbal medicines to the fetus [p < 0.05].
The study emphasized the wide spread use of herbal medicines by pregnant women in Nigeria highlighting an urgent need for health care practitioners and other health care givers to be aware of this practice and make efforts in obtaining information about herb use during ante-natal care. This will help forestall possible interaction between herbal and conventional medicines.
Use of herbal medicine in the treatment of liver cancer has a long tradition. The compounds derived from the herb and herbal composites are of considerable interest among oncologists. In the past, certain herbal compounds and herbal composite formulas have been studied through in vitro and in vivo as an anti-hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) agent, enhancing our knowledge about their biologic functions and targets. However there is a significant distinction between the herbal medicine and the herbal production even though both are the plant-based remedies used in the practice. In this article, for the sake of clarity, the effective herbal compounds and herbal composite formulas against HCC are discussed, with emphasizing the basic conceptions of herbal medicine in order to have a better understanding of the prevention and treatment of HCC by herbal active compounds and herbal composite formulas.
To determine whether students' previous pharmacy-related work experience was associated with their pharmacy school performance (academic and clinical).
The following measures of student academic performance were examined: pharmacy grade point average (GPA), scores on cumulative high-stakes examinations, and advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE) grades. The quantity and type of pharmacy-related work experience each student performed prior to matriculation was solicited through a student survey instrument. Survey responses were correlated with academic measures, and demographic-based stratified analyses were conducted.
No significant difference in academic or clinical performance between those students with prior pharmacy experience and those without was identified. Subanalyses by work setting, position type, and substantial pharmacy work experience did not reveal any association with student performance. A relationship was found, however, between age and work experience, ie, older students tended to have more work experience than younger students.
Prior pharmacy work experience did not affect students' overall academic or clinical performance in pharmacy school. The lack of significant findings may have been due to the inherent practice limitations of nonpharmacist positions, changes in pharmacy education, and the limitations of survey responses.
work experience; performance admissions; academic performance; high-stakes testing
To evaluate the effectiveness of an integrated approach to the teaching of evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in a pharmacy curriculum.
Evidence-based CAM education was integrated throughout the third, fourth, and fifth years of the pharmacy curriculum. Specifically, an introductory module focusing on CAM familiarization was added in the third year and integrated, evidence-based teaching related to CAM was incorporated into clinical topics through lectures and clinical case studies in the fourth and fifth years.
Students' self-assessed and actual CAM knowledge increased, as did their use of evidence-based CAM resources. However, only 30% of the fourth-year students felt they had learned enough about CAM. Students preferred having CAM teaching integrated into the curriculum beginning in the first year rather than waiting until later in their education.
CAM education integrated over several years of study increases students' knowledge and application.
complementary and alternative medicines; curriculum; evidence-based education
Objective. To implement a service learning program in nutrition and assess its impact on pharmacy students' communication skills and professionalism and elementary school children's knowledge of nutrition concepts.
Design. First-year pharmacy students completed 4 nutrition education sessions led by a registered dietitian and then presented the material to pre-selected classes of at-risk elementary school children in kindergarten through third grade.
Assessment. Ninety-six pharmacy students completed the pre- and post-experience survey and more than 90% rated achievement of course objectives as strongly agree or agree. Four hundred sixty-eight elementary students completed a pre- and posttest on nutrition knowledge. Significant improvement was found in all grade levels on the knowledge test.
Conclusion. This service learning experience was beneficial for the elementary school children and pharmacy students, enhancing the knowledge of both groups and establishing a positive relationship between the pharmacy school and the community.
nutrition; service learning; community; pediatric
To introduce a high-fidelity simulation series into a 5-year doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) curriculum to demonstrate a hybrid model for introductory pharmacy practice experience (IPPE) delivery.
Fourth-year pharmacy students at a satellite campus participated in a 6-week high-fidelity patient simulation series in which small groups of students worked with members of a patient care team to care for patients in the following scenarios: asthma exacerbation, acute decompensated heart failure, and infective endocarditis with a subsequent anaphylactic reaction to the antibiotic. Fourth-year pharmacy students at the main campus who did not participate in the simulation served as a comparator group.
Students' scores on a knowledge-based post-simulation quiz were significantly higher than scores on the presimulation quiz (p < 0.05). Knowledge retention was significantly higher among the simulation participants than students in the comparator group (p = 0.004). The majority (76%) of students felt more confident “making clinical recommendations to a healthcare provider” after completing the simulation series (p = 0.01).
High-fidelity patient simulation is an effective active-learning strategy to augment IPPEs that allows students to apply clinical skills in a realistic but low-risk patient care setting.
simulation; patient simulation; pharmacotherapy; experiential education; introductory pharmacy practice experience
Despite the prevalence of musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders, the degree to which medical schools are providing students the knowledge and confidence to treat these problems is unclear. This study evaluated MSK knowledge in second and fourth year medical students using a newly developed written assessment tool and examined the maturation of clinical confidence in treating core MSK disorders.
Over a 3-year period, the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) MSK subject examination consisting of 75 items was administered to 568 second and fourth year students at a single institution. Students were also asked to rate their confidence in treating a selection of medicine/pediatric and MSK clinical scenarios on a 5-point Likert scale.
Participation rate was 98%. The NBME MSK assessment score was 59.2±10.6 for all second year medical students and 69.7±9.6 for all fourth year medical students. There was a significant increase in NBME scores between the second and fourth years (p<0.0001). Students were more confident in treating internal medicine/pediatric conditions than MSK medicine conditions (p=0.001). Confidence in treating MSK medicine conditions did not improve between the second and fourth years (p=0.41).
To our knowledge, this is the first study to report increased MSK medicine knowledge as measured by a standardized examination after completing medical school core clinical rotations. Despite increased MSK knowledge, low levels of MSK clinical confidence among graduating students were noted. Further research is needed to determine the factors that influence MSK knowledge and clinical confidence in medical students.
NBME musculoskeletal subject exam; musculoskeletal clinical scenarios