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1.  Optimizing the Implementation of Practice Improvement Modules in Training: Lessons from Educators 
Background
The American Board of Internal Medicine approved the use of Practice Improvement Modules (PIMs) to help training programs teach and assess practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) and systems-based practice (SBP).
Methods
We surveyed individuals who ordered a PIM in a residency or fellowship training program between June 2006 and August 2009. The 43 programs that volunteered to participate completed a 30-minute anonymous online survey.
Results
Program directors or associate program directors led the PIM process in 30 programs (70%). Trainees' degrees of involvement in PIMs were highly variable between programs, and several respondents felt that trainees were either not sufficiently engaged or not engaged with enough consistency. The most common activity for trainee involvement was data collection through patient surveys or chart review, although only 17 programs (40%) provided protected time for this activity. Few trainees participated in higher level activities such as data analysis or identification for areas of improvement or were given leadership roles; yet most respondents reported that completing the PIM helped trainees learn basic principles of QI and develop competence in PBLI and SBP and that PIM completion improved the program's ability to develop QI initiatives and resulted in program or institutional improvements, including sustainable improvement in patient care. Most respondents reported that the outcome warranted the effort to complete PIMs.
Conclusions
PIMs may be a valuable but underused educational experience for trainees as well as training programs. Focusing on particular themes and facets of PIMs may facilitate implementation.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-11-00281.1
PMCID: PMC3613323  PMID: 24404231
2.  Impact of subspecialty elective exposures on outcomes on the American board of internal medicine certification examination 
BMC Medical Education  2012;12:94.
Background
The American Board of Internal Medicine Certification Examination (ABIM-CE) is one of several methods used to assess medical knowledge, an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) core competency for graduating internal medicine residents. With recent changes in graduate medical education program directors and internal medicine residents are seeking evidence to guide decisions regarding residency elective choices. Prior studies have shown that formalized elective curricula improve subspecialty ABIM-CE scores. The primary aim of this study was to evaluate whether the number of subspecialty elective exposures or the specific subspecialties which residents complete electives in impact ABIM-CE scores.
Methods
ABIM-CE scores, elective exposures and demographic characteristics were collected for MedStar Georgetown University Hospital internal medicine residents who were first-time takers of the ABIM-CE in 2006–2010 (n=152). Elective exposures were defined as a two-week period assigned to the respective subspecialty. ABIM-CE score was analyzed using the difference between the ABIM-CE score and the standardized passing score (delta-SPS). Subspecialty scores were analyzed using percentage of correct responses. Data was analyzed using GraphPad Prism version 5.00 for Windows.
Results
Paired elective exposure and ABIM-CE scores were available in 131 residents. There was no linear correlation between ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS and the total number of electives or the number of unique elective exposures. Residents with ≤14 elective exposures had higher ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS than those with ≥15 elective exposures (143.4 compared to 129.7, p=0.051). Repeated electives in individual subspecialties were not associated with significant difference in mean ABIM-CE delta-SPS.
Conclusions
This study did not demonstrate significant positive associations between individual subspecialty elective exposures and ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS score. Residents with ≤14 elective exposures had higher ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS than those with ≥15 elective exposures suggesting there may be an “ideal” number of elective exposures that supports improved ABIM-CE performance. Repeated elective exposures in an individual specialty did not correlate with overall or subspecialty ABIM-CE performance.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-12-94
PMCID: PMC3480921  PMID: 23057635
Resident education; Gender; Elective; Subspecialty; Graduate medical education
3.  Teaching Internal Medicine Residents to Sustain Their Improvement Through the Quality Assessment and Improvement Curriculum 
ABSTRACT
INTRODUCTION
Although sustainability is a key component in the evaluation of continuous quality improvement (CQI) projects, medicine resident CQI projects are often evaluated by immediate improvements in targeted areas without addressing sustainability.
AIM/SETTING
To assess the sustainability of resident CQI projects in an ambulatory university-based clinic.
PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
During their ambulatory rotation, all second year internal medicine residents use the American Board of Internal Medicine’s Clinical Preventive Services (CPS) Practice Improvement Modules (PIM) to complete chart reviews, patient surveys, and a system survey. The residents then develop a group CQI project and collect early post data. Third year residents return to evaluate their original CQI project during an ambulatory rotation two to six months later and complete four plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycles on each CQI project.
PROGRAM EVALUATION
From July 2006 to June 2009, 64 (100%) medicine residents completed the CQI curriculum. Residents completed six group projects and examined their success using early (2 to 6 weeks) and late (2 to 6 months) post-intervention data. Three of the projects demonstrated sustainable improvement in the resident continuity clinic.
DISCUSSION
When residents are taught principles of sustainability and spread and asked to complete multiple PDSA cycles, they are able to identify common themes that may contribute to success of QI projects over time.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1547-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1547-y
PMCID: PMC3019318  PMID: 21053089
resident education; quality improvement; sustainability; practice-based learning and improvement; system-based practice
4.  Instituting systems-based practice and practice-based learning and improvement: a curriculum of inquiry 
Medical Education Online  2013;18:10.3402/meo.v18i0.21612.
Background
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requires that training programs integrate system-based practice (SBP) and practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) into internal medicine residency curricula.
Context and setting
We instituted a seminar series and year-long-mentored curriculum designed to engage internal medicine residents in these competencies.
Methods
Residents participate in a seminar series that includes assigned reading and structured discussion with faculty who assist in the development of quality improvement or research projects. Residents pursue projects over the remainder of the year. Monthly works in progress meetings, protected time for inquiry, and continued faculty mentorship guide the residents in their project development. Trainees present their work at hospital-wide grand rounds at the end of the academic year. We performed a survey of residents to assess their self-reported knowledge, attitudes and skills in SBP and PBLI. In addition, blinded faculty scored projects for appropriateness, impact, and feasibility.
Outcomes
We measured resident self-reported knowledge, attitudes, and skills at the end of the academic year. We found evidence that participants improved their understanding of the context in which they were practicing, and that their ability to engage in quality improvement projects increased. Blinded faculty reviewers favorably ranked the projects’ feasibility, impact, and appropriateness. The ‘Curriculum of Inquiry’ generated 11 quality improvement and research projects during the study period. Barriers to the ongoing work include a limited supply of mentors and delays due to Institutional Review Board approval. Hospital leadership recognizes the importance of the curriculum, and our accreditation manager now cites our ongoing work.
Conclusions
A structured residency-based curriculum facilitates resident demonstration of SBP and practice-based learning and improvement. Residents gain knowledge and skills though this enterprise and hospitals gain access to trainees who help to solve ongoing problems and meet accreditation requirements.
doi:10.3402/meo.v18i0.21612
PMCID: PMC3776321  PMID: 24044686
graduate medical education; competencies; longitudinal curriculum
5.  A nomogram to predict the probability of passing the American Board of Internal Medicine examination 
Medical Education Online  2012;17:10.3402/meo.v17i0.18810.
Background
Although the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) certification is valued as a reflection of physicians’ experience, education, and expertise, limited methods exist to predict performance in the examination.
Purpose
The objective of this study was to develop and validate a predictive tool based on variables common to all residency programs, regarding the probability of an internal medicine graduate passing the ABIM certification examination.
Methods
The development cohort was obtained from the files of the Cleveland Clinic internal medicine residents who began training between 2004 and 2008. A multivariable logistic regression model was built to predict the ABIM passing rate. The model was represented as a nomogram, which was internally validated with bootstrap resamples. The external validation was done retrospectively on a cohort of residents who graduated from two other independent internal medicine residency programs between 2007 and 2011.
Results
Of the 194 Cleveland Clinic graduates used for the nomogram development, 175 (90.2%) successfully passed the ABIM certification examination. The final nomogram included four predictors: In-Training Examination (ITE) scores in postgraduate year (PGY) 1, 2, and 3, and the number of months of overnight calls in the last 6 months of residency. The nomogram achieved a concordance index (CI) of 0.98 after correcting for over-fitting bias and allowed for the determination of an estimated probability of passing the ABIM exam. Of the 126 graduates from two other residency programs used for external validation, 116 (92.1%) passed the ABIM examination. The nomogram CI in the external validation cohort was 0.94, suggesting outstanding discrimination.
Conclusions
A simple user-friendly predictive tool, based on readily available data, was developed to predict the probability of passing the ABIM exam for internal medicine residents. This may guide program directors’ decision-making related to program curriculum and advice given to individual residents regarding board preparation.
doi:10.3402/meo.v17i0.18810
PMCID: PMC3475012  PMID: 23078794
board examination; in-training examination; internal medicine; residents; program directors
6.  Implementing the 2009 Institute of Medicine recommendations on resident physician work hours, supervision, and safety 
Long working hours and sleep deprivation have been a facet of physician training in the US since the advent of the modern residency system. However, the scientific evidence linking fatigue with deficits in human performance, accidents and errors in industries from aeronautics to medicine, nuclear power, and transportation has mounted over the last 40 years. This evidence has also spawned regulations to help ensure public safety across safety-sensitive industries, with the notable exception of medicine.
In late 2007, at the behest of the US Congress, the Institute of Medicine embarked on a year-long examination of the scientific evidence linking resident physician sleep deprivation with clinical performance deficits and medical errors. The Institute of Medicine’s report, entitled “Resident duty hours: Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety”, published in January 2009, recommended new limits on resident physician work hours and workload, increased supervision, a heightened focus on resident physician safety, training in structured handovers and quality improvement, more rigorous external oversight of work hours and other aspects of residency training, and the identification of expanded funding sources necessary to implement the recommended reforms successfully and protect the public and resident physicians themselves from preventable harm.
Given that resident physicians comprise almost a quarter of all physicians who work in hospitals, and that taxpayers, through Medicare and Medicaid, fund graduate medical education, the public has a deep investment in physician training. Patients expect to receive safe, high-quality care in the nation’s teaching hospitals. Because it is their safety that is at issue, their voices should be central in policy decisions affecting patient safety. It is likewise important to integrate the perspectives of resident physicians, policy makers, and other constituencies in designing new policies. However, since its release, discussion of the Institute of Medicine report has been largely confined to the medical education community, led by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).
To begin gathering these perspectives and developing a plan to implement safer work hours for resident physicians, a conference entitled “Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety: What will it take to implement the Institute of Medicine recommendations?” was held at Harvard Medical School on June 17–18, 2010. This White Paper is a product of a diverse group of 26 representative stakeholders bringing relevant new information and innovative practices to bear on a critical patient safety problem. Given that our conference included experts from across disciplines with diverse perspectives and interests, not every recommendation was endorsed by each invited conference participant. However, every recommendation made here was endorsed by the majority of the group, and many were endorsed unanimously. Conference members participated in the process, reviewed the final product, and provided input before publication. Participants provided their individual perspectives, which do not necessarily represent the formal views of any organization.
In September 2010 the ACGME issued new rules to go into effect on July 1, 2011. Unfortunately, they stop considerably short of the Institute of Medicine’s recommendations and those endorsed by this conference. In particular, the ACGME only applied the limitation of 16 hours to first-year resident physicans. Thus, it is clear that policymakers, hospital administrators, and residency program directors who wish to implement safer health care systems must go far beyond what the ACGME will require. We hope this White Paper will serve as a guide and provide encouragement for that effort.
Resident physician workload and supervision
By the end of training, a resident physician should be able to practice independently. Yet much of resident physicians’ time is dominated by tasks with little educational value. The caseload can be so great that inadequate reflective time is left for learning based on clinical experiences. In addition, supervision is often vaguely defined and discontinuous. Medical malpractice data indicate that resident physicians are frequently named in lawsuits, most often for lack of supervision. The recommendations are: The ACGME should adjust resident physicians workload requirements to optimize educational value. Resident physicians as well as faculty should be involved in work redesign that eliminates nonessential and noneducational activity from resident physician dutiesMechanisms should be developed for identifying in real time when a resident physician’s workload is excessive, and processes developed to activate additional providersTeamwork should be actively encouraged in delivery of patient care. Historically, much of medical training has focused on individual knowledge, skills, and responsibility. As health care delivery has become more complex, it will be essential to train resident and attending physicians in effective teamwork that emphasizes collective responsibility for patient care and recognizes the signs, both individual and systemic, of a schedule and working conditions that are too demanding to be safeHospitals should embrace the opportunities that resident physician training redesign offers. Hospitals should recognize and act on the potential benefits of work redesign, eg, increased efficiency, reduced costs, improved quality of care, and resident physician and attending job satisfactionAttending physicians should supervise all hospital admissions. Resident physicians should directly discuss all admissions with attending physicians. Attending physicians should be both cognizant of and have input into the care patients are to receive upon admission to the hospitalInhouse supervision should be required for all critical care services, including emergency rooms, intensive care units, and trauma services. Resident physicians should not be left unsupervised to care for critically ill patients. In settings in which the acuity is high, physicians who have completed residency should provide direct supervision for resident physicians. Supervising physicians should always be physically in the hospital for supervision of resident physicians who care for critically ill patientsThe ACGME should explicitly define “good” supervision by specialty and by year of training. Explicit requirements for intensity and level of training for supervision of specific clinical scenarios should be providedCenters for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) should use graduate medical education funding to provide incentives to programs with proven, effective levels of supervision. Although this action would require federal legislation, reimbursement rules would help to ensure that hospitals pay attention to the importance of good supervision and require it from their training programs
Resident physician work hours
Although the IOM “Sleep, supervision and safety” report provides a comprehensive review and discussion of all aspects of graduate medical education training, the report’s focal point is its recommendations regarding the hours that resident physicians are currently required to work. A considerable body of scientific evidence, much of it cited by the Institute of Medicine report, describes deteriorating performance in fatigued humans, as well as specific studies on resident physician fatigue and preventable medical errors.
The question before this conference was what work redesign and cultural changes are needed to reform work hours as recommended by the Institute of Medicine’s evidence-based report? Extensive scientific data demonstrate that shifts exceeding 12–16 hours without sleep are unsafe. Several principles should be followed in efforts to reduce consecutive hours below this level and achieve safer work schedules. The recommendations are: Limit resident physician work hours to 12–16 hour maximum shiftsA minimum of 10 hours off duty should be scheduled between shiftsResident physician input into work redesign should be actively solicitedSchedules should be designed that adhere to principles of sleep and circadian science; this includes careful consideration of the effects of multiple consecutive night shifts, and provision of adequate time off after night work, as specified in the IOM reportResident physicians should not be scheduled up to the maximum permissible limits; emergencies frequently occur that require resident physicians to stay longer than their scheduled shifts, and this should be anticipated in scheduling resident physicians’ work shiftsHospitals should anticipate the need for iterative improvement as new schedules are initiated; be prepared to learn from the initial phase-in, and change the plan as neededAs resident physician work hours are redesigned, attending physicians should also be considered; a potential consequence of resident physician work hour reduction and increased supervisory requirements may be an increase in work for attending physicians; this should be carefully monitored, and adjustments to attending physician work schedules made as needed to prevent unsafe work hours or working conditions for this group“Home call” should be brought under the overall limits of working hours; work load and hours should be monitored in each residency program to ensure that resident physicians and fellows on home call are getting sufficient sleepMedicare funding for graduate medical education in each hospital should be linked with adherence to the Institute of Medicine limits on resident physician work hours
Moonlighting by resident physicians
The Institute of Medicine report recommended including external as well as internal moonlighting in working hour limits. The recommendation is: All moonlighting work hours should be included in the ACGME working hour limits and actively monitored. Hospitals should formalize a moonlighting policy and establish systems for actively monitoring resident physician moonlighting
Safety of resident physicians
The “Sleep, supervision and safety” report also addresses fatigue-related harm done to resident physicians themselves. The report focuses on two main sources of physical injury to resident physicians impaired by fatigue, ie, needle-stick exposure to blood-borne pathogens and motor vehicle crashes. Providing safe transportation home for resident physicians is a logistical and financial challenge for hospitals. Educating physicians at all levels on the dangers of fatigue is clearly required to change driving behavior so that safe hospital-funded transport home is used effectively. Fatigue-related injury prevention (including not driving while drowsy) should be taught in medical school and during residency, and reinforced with attending physicians; hospitals and residency programs must be informed that resident physicians’ ability to judge their own level of impairment is impaired when they are sleep deprived; hence, leaving decisions about the capacity to drive to impaired resident physicians is not recommendedHospitals should provide transportation to all resident physicians who report feeling too tired to drive safely; in addition, although consecutive work should not exceed 16 hours, hospitals should provide transportation for all resident physicians who, because of unforeseen reasons or emergencies, work for longer than consecutive 24 hours; transportation under these circumstances should be automatically provided to house staff, and should not rely on self-identification or request
Training in effective handovers and quality improvement
Handover practice for resident physicians, attendings, and other health care providers has long been identified as a weak link in patient safety throughout health care settings. Policies to improve handovers of care must be tailored to fit the appropriate clinical scenario, recognizing that information overload can also be a problem. At the heart of improving handovers is the organizational effort to improve quality, an effort in which resident physicians have typically been insufficiently engaged. The recommendations are: Hospitals should train attending and resident physicians in effective handovers of careHospitals should create uniform processes for handovers that are tailored to meet each clinical setting; all handovers should be done verbally and face-to-face, but should also utilize written toolsWhen possible, hospitals should integrate hand-over tools into their electronic medical records (EMR) systems; these systems should be standardized to the extent possible across residency programs in a hospital, but may be tailored to the needs of specific programs and services; federal government should help subsidize adoption of electronic medical records by hospitals to improve signoutWhen feasible, handovers should be a team effort including nurses, patients, and familiesHospitals should include residents in their quality improvement and patient safety efforts; the ACGME should specify in their core competency requirements that resident physicians work on quality improvement projects; likewise, the Joint Commission should require that resident physicians be included in quality improvement and patient safety programs at teaching hospitals; hospital administrators and residency program directors should create opportunities for resident physicians to become involved in ongoing quality improvement projects and root cause analysis teams; feedback on successful quality improvement interventions should be shared with resident physicians and broadly disseminatedQuality improvement/patient safety concepts should be integral to the medical school curriculum; medical school deans should elevate the topics of patient safety, quality improvement, and teamwork; these concepts should be integrated throughout the medical school curriculum and reinforced throughout residency; mastery of these concepts by medical students should be tested on the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) stepsFederal government should support involvement of resident physicians in quality improvement efforts; initiatives to improve quality by including resident physicians in quality improvement projects should be financially supported by the Department of Health and Human Services
Monitoring and oversight of the ACGME
While the ACGME is a key stakeholder in residency training, external voices are essential to ensure that public interests are heard in the development and monitoring of standards. Consequently, the Institute of Medicine report recommended external oversight and monitoring through the Joint Commission and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The recommendations are: Make comprehensive fatigue management a Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goal; fatigue is a safety concern not only for resident physicians, but also for nurses, attending physicians, and other health care workers; the Joint Commission should seek to ensure that all health care workers, not just resident physicians, are working as safely as possibleFederal government, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, should encourage development of comprehensive fatigue management programs which all health systems would eventually be required to implementMake ACGME compliance with working hours a “ condition of participation” for reimbursement of direct and indirect graduate medical education costs; financial incentives will greatly increase the adoption of and compliance with ACGME standards
Future financial support for implementation
The Institute of Medicine’s report estimates that $1.7 billion (in 2008 dollars) would be needed to implement its recommendations. Twenty-five percent of that amount ($376 million) will be required just to bring hospitals into compliance with the existing 2003 ACGME rules. Downstream savings to the health care system could potentially result from safer care, but these benefits typically do not accrue to hospitals and residency programs, who have been asked historically to bear the burden of residency reform costs. The recommendations are: The Institute of Medicine should convene a panel of stakeholders, including private and public funders of health care and graduate medical education, to lay down the concrete steps necessary to identify and allocate the resources needed to implement the recommendations contained in the IOM “Resident duty hours: Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety” report. Conference participants suggested several approaches to engage public and private support for this initiativeEfforts to find additional funding to implement the Institute of Medicine recommendations should focus more broadly on patient safety and health care delivery reform; policy efforts focused narrowly upon resident physician work hours are less likely to succeed than broad patient safety initiatives that include residency redesign as a key componentHospitals should view the Institute of Medicine recommendations as an opportunity to begin resident physician work redesign projects as the core of a business model that embraces safety and ultimately saves resourcesBoth the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services should take the Institute of Medicine recommendations into consideration when promulgating rules for innovation grantsThe National Health Care Workforce Commission should consider the Institute of Medicine recommendations when analyzing the nation’s physician workforce needs
Recommendations for future research
Conference participants concurred that convening the stakeholders and agreeing on a research agenda was key. Some observed that some sectors within the medical education community have been reluctant to act on the data. Several logical funders for future research were identified. But above all agencies, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is the only stakeholder that funds graduate medical education upstream and will reap savings downstream if preventable medical errors are reduced as a result of reform of resident physician work hours.
doi:10.2147/NSS.S19649
PMCID: PMC3630963  PMID: 23616719
resident; hospital; working hours; safety
7.  A Self-instructional Model to Teach Systems-based Practice and Practice-based Learning and Improvement 
Background
When mandated as resident competencies in 1999, systems-based practice (SBP) and practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) were new concepts to many.
Objective
To describe and evaluate a 4-week clinical elective (Achieving Competence Today—ACT) to teach residents SBP and PBLI.
Design
ACT consisted of a four-week active learning course and follow-up teaching experience, guided and supported by web-based materials. The curriculum included readings, scheduled activities, work products including an improvement project, and weekly meetings with a non-expert preceptor. The evaluation used a before–after cross-comparison of ACT residents and their peers.
Participants
Seventy-eight residents and 42 faculty in 18 US Internal Medicine residency programs participated between 2003 and 2005.
Results and Main Measurements
All residents and faculty preceptors responded to a knowledge test, survey of attitudes, and self-assessment of competency to do 15 tasks related to SBP/PBLI. All measures were normalized to a 100-point scale. Each program’s principal investigator (PI) identified aspects of ACT that were most and least effective in enhancing resident learning. ACT residents’ gains in knowledge (4.4 on a 100-point scale) and self-assessed competency (11.3) were greater than controls’ (−1.9, −8.0), but changes in attitudes were not significantly different. Faculty preceptors’ knowledge scores did not change, but their attitudes became more positive (15.8). PIs found a ready-to-use curriculum effective (rated 8.5 on a 10-point scale).
Conclusions
ACT increased residents’ knowledge and self-assessment of their own competency and raised faculty’s assessment of the importance of residents’ learning SBP/PBLI. Faculty content expertise is not required for residents to learn SBP/PBLI.
doi:10.1007/s11606-008-0517-0
PMCID: PMC2517944  PMID: 18612719
residency training; systems-based practice; practice-based learning and improvement
8.  Pilot Study Evaluating a Practice-Based Learning and Improvement Curriculum Focusing on the Development of System-Level Quality Improvement Skills 
Background
We developed a practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) curriculum to address important gaps in components of content and experiential learning activities through didactics and participation in systems-level quality improvement projects that focus on making changes in health care processes.
Methods
We evaluated the impact of our curriculum on resident PBLI knowledge, self-efficacy, and application skills. A quasi-experimental design assessed the impact of a curriculum (PBLI quality improvement systems compared with non-PBLI) on internal medicine residents' learning during a 4-week ambulatory block. We measured application skills, self-efficacy, and knowledge by using the Systems Quality Improvement Training and Assessment Tool. Exit evaluations assessed time invested and experiences related to the team projects and suggestions for improving the curriculum.
Results
The 2 groups showed differences in change scores. Relative to the comparison group, residents in the PBLI curriculum demonstrated a significant increase in the belief about their ability to implement a continuous quality improvement project (P  =  .020), comfort level in developing data collection plans (P  =  .010), and total knowledge scores (P < .001), after adjusting for prior PBLI experience. Participants in the PBLI curriculum also demonstrated significant improvement in providing a more complete aim statement for a proposed project after adjusting for prior PBLI experience (P  =  .001). Exit evaluations were completed by 96% of PBLI curriculum participants who reported high satisfaction with team performance.
Conclusion
Residents in our curriculum showed gains in areas fundamental for PBLI competency. The observed improvements were related to fundamental quality improvement knowledge, with limited gain in application skills. This suggests that while heading in the right direction, we need to conceptualize and structure PBLI training in a way that integrates it throughout the residency program and fosters the application of this knowledge and these skills.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-10-00104.1
PMCID: PMC3186260  PMID: 22379523
9.  Are Commonly Used Resident Measurements Associated with Procedural Skills in Internal Medicine Residency Training? 
Background
Acquisition of competence in performing a variety of procedures is essential during Internal Medicine (IM) residency training.
Purposes
Determine the rate of procedural complications by IM residents; determine whether there was a correlation between having 1 or more complications and institutional procedural certification status or attending ratings of resident procedural skill competence on the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) monthly evaluation form (ABIM-MEF). Assess if an association exists between procedural complications and in-training examination and ABIM board certification scores.
Methods
We retrospectively reviewed all procedure log sheets, procedural certification status, ABIM-MEF procedural skills ratings, in-training exam and certifying examination (ABIM-CE) scores from the period 1990–1999 for IM residency program graduates from a training program.
Results
Among 69 graduates, 2,212 monthly procedure log sheets and 2,475 ABIM-MEFs were reviewed. The overall complication rate was 2.3/1,000 procedures (95% CI: 1.4–3.1/1,000 procedure). With the exception of procedural certification status as judged by institutional faculty, there was no association between our resident measurements and procedural complications.
Conclusions
Our findings support the need for a resident procedural competence certification system based on direct observation. Our data support the ABIM’s action to remove resident procedural competence from the monthly ABIM-MEF ratings.
doi:10.1007/s11606-006-0068-1
PMCID: PMC1824756  PMID: 17356968
procedural skills; Internal Medicine residency training program; ABIM evaluation
10.  Are Commonly Used Resident Measurements Associated with Procedural Skills in Internal Medicine Residency Training? 
Background
Acquisition of competence in performing a variety of procedures is essential during Internal Medicine (IM) residency training.
Purposes
Determine the rate of procedural complications by IM residents; determine whether there was a correlation between having 1 or more complications and institutional procedural certification status or attending ratings of resident procedural skill competence on the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) monthly evaluation form (ABIM-MEF). Assess if an association exists between procedural complications and in-training examination and ABIM board certification scores.
Methods
We retrospectively reviewed all procedure log sheets, procedural certification status, ABIM-MEF procedural skills ratings, in-training exam and certifying examination (ABIM-CE) scores from the period 1990–1999 for IM residency program graduates from a training program.
Results
Among 69 graduates, 2,212 monthly procedure log sheets and 2,475 ABIM-MEFs were reviewed. The overall complication rate was 2.3/1,000 procedures (95% CI: 1.4–3.1/1,000 procedure). With the exception of procedural certification status as judged by institutional faculty, there was no association between our resident measurements and procedural complications.
Conclusions
Our findings support the need for a resident procedural competence certification system based on direct observation. Our data support the ABIM’s action to remove resident procedural competence from the monthly ABIM-MEF ratings.
doi:10.1007/s11606-006-0068-1
PMCID: PMC1824756  PMID: 17356968
procedural skills; Internal Medicine residency training program; ABIM evaluation
11.  An Alternative Practice Model: Residents Transform Continuity Clinic and Become Systems Thinkers 
Background
A changing health care environment has created a need for physicians trained in health system improvement. Residency programs have struggled to teach and assess practice-based learning and improvement and systems-based practice competencies, particularly within ambulatory settings.
Intervention
We describe a resident-created and resident-led quality and practice-improvement council in an internal medicine continuity clinic. We conducted focus groups and report on residents' perspectives on council membership, practice management experiences, quality improvement projects, and resident satisfaction.
Method
Focus groups were held from May 2009 to March 2010 with internal medicine residents (N  =  5/focus group) who participated in the Continuity Clinic Ownership in Resident Education (CCORE) council. Data were analyzed with a grounded theory approach.
Results
During the focus groups, residents responded to the question: “Do you have any new insights into delivering quality patient care in an outpatient clinic as a result of this experience (CCORE membership)?” The qualitative analysis resulted in 6 themes: systems thinking and systems-based care skills; improving quality of patient care; improved clinic efficiency; ownership of patients; need for improved communication of practice changes; and a springboard for research.
Conclusions
CCORE residents participated in system changes and acquired leadership skills while working on practice-based and system problems in a clinic microsystem. We believe this model can be implemented by other residency programs to promote the development of systems thinking in residents, increase their ownership of continuity clinic, and empower them to implement system changes.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-11-00133.1
PMCID: PMC3399618  PMID: 23730447
12.  Protocol-directed care in the ICU: making a future generation of intensivists less knowledgeable? 
Critical Care  2012;16(2):307.
Expanded abstract
Citation
Prasad M, Holmboe ES, Lipner RS, Hess BJ, Christie JD, Bellamy SL, Rubenfeld GD, Kahn JM. Clinical Protocols and Trainee Knowledge About Mechanical Ventilation. JAMA. 2011; 306(9):935-941. PubMed PMID: 21900133 This is available on http://www.pubmed.gov
Background
Clinical protocols are associated with improved patient outcomes; however, they may negatively affect medical education by removing trainees from clinical decision making.
Methods
Objective: To study the relationship between critical care training with mechanical ventilation protocols and subsequent knowledge about ventilator management.
Design: A retrospective cohort equivalence study linking a national survey of mechanical ventilation protocol availability with knowledge about mechanical ventilation. Exposure to protocols was defined as high intensity if an intensive care unit had 2 or more protocols for at least 3 years and as low intensity if 0 or 1 protocol.
Setting: Accredited US pulmonary and critical care fellowship programs.
Subjects: First-time examinees of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Critical Care Medicine Certification Examination in 2008 and 2009.
Intervention: N/A
Outcomes: Knowledge, measured by performance on examination questions specific to mechanical ventilation management, calculated as a mechanical ventilation score using item response theory. The score is standardized to a mean (SD) of 500 (100), and a clinically important difference is defined as 25. Variables included in adjusted analyses were birth country, residency training country, and overall first-attempt score on the ABIM Internal Medicine Certification Examination.
Results
The 90 of 129 programs (70%) responded to the survey. Seventy seven programs (86%) had protocols for ventilation liberation, 66 (73%) for sedation management, and 54 (60%) for lung-protective ventilation at the time of the survey. Eighty eight (98%) of these programs had trainees who completed the ABIM Critical Care Medicine Certification Examination, totaling 553 examinees. Of these 88 programs, 27 (31%) had 0 protocols, 19 (22%) had 1 protocol, 24 (27%) had 2 protocols, and 18 (20%) had 3 protocols for at least 3 years. 42 programs (48%) were classified as high intensity and 46 (52%) as low intensity, with 304 trainees (55%) and 249 trainees (45%), respectively. In bi-variable analysis, no difference in mean scores was observed in high-intensity (497; 95% CI, 486-507) vs low-intensity programs (497; 95% CI, 485-509). Mean difference was 0 (95% CI, -16 to 16), with a positive value indicating a higher score in the high-intensity group. In multivariable analyses, no association of training was observed in a high-intensity program with mechanical ventilation score (adjusted mean difference, -5.36; 95% CI, -20.7 to 10.0).
Conclusions
Among first-time ABIM Critical Care Medicine Certification Examination examinees, training in a high-intensity ventilator protocol environment compared with a low-intensity environment was not associated with worse performance on examination questions about mechanical ventilation management.
doi:10.1186/cc11257
PMCID: PMC3681378  PMID: 22494787
13.  Maintenance of certification in Internal Medicine: participation rates and patient outcomes 
The clinical practice of internal medicine continues to evolve with the addition of new information and new technology. Most internists in practice will have erosion of their knowledge after they complete training unless life-long learning occurs. The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) began to issue time-limited certification in 1990 and asserts that the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program promotes the professional development of internists. However, the available medical literature does not provide strong support for the assumption that internists with certification or recertification have better patient outcomes. This relationship between recertification and patient outcomes needs more study. In addition, the participation in the Maintenance of Certification program by internists with lifetime certifications has been low, and recertification by leaders in internal medicine has also been relatively low. Some physicians in practice have concerns about the relevance of the program and the cost. Our review suggests that the ABIM needs to review its current Maintenance of Certification program and make changes to enhance its clinical relevance and educational value. We suggest that professional development should be based on focused reviews of the current literature, which is immediately relevant to clinical practice, and that recertification could be based on completion of modules and more frequent, less onerous testing.
doi:10.3402/jchimp.v2i4.19753
PMCID: PMC3715151  PMID: 23882382
certification; recertification; internal medicine; patient outcomes; mortality
14.  Developing a Practice-Based Learning and Improvement Curriculum for an Academic General Surgery Residency 
Background
Program Directors in Surgery are now facing the challenge of incorporating the ACGME's practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) competency into residency curriculum. We introduced a comprehensive PBLI experience for PG2 residents designed to integrate specific competency goals (quality improvement, clinical thinking, and self-directed learning) within the context of residents’ clinical practice.
Study Design
Fourteen PG2 residents participated in a three-week PBLI curriculum consisting of three components: Complex Clinical Decision Making (CCDM), Individual Learning Plan, and Quality Improvement (QI). To assess how effectively the curriculum addressed these three competencies, residents rated their understanding of PBLI by answering a 12-question written survey given pre- and post-rotation. Resident satisfaction was assessed through standard post-rotation evaluations.
Results
Analysis of the pre and post rotation surveys from the fourteen participants showed an increase in all measured elements, including knowledge of PBLI (p<0.001), ability to assess learning needs (p<0.001) and set learning goals (p<0.001), understanding of QI concepts (p=0.001), and experience with QI projects (p<0.001). Fourteen QI projects were developed. Although many residents found the creation of measurable learning goals to be challenging, the process of identifying strengths and weaknesses enhanced the resident's self-understanding, and contributed to overall satisfaction with the rotation.
Conclusions
The initial implementation of our PBLI curriculum demonstrated that residents report personal progress in their clinical decision making, self-directed learning, and familiarity with quality improvement. This comprehensive PBLI curriculum was accepted by surgical residents as a valuable part of their training. We are encouraged to continue a clinically-grounded PBLI experience for PG2 residents.
doi:10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2010.01.017
PMCID: PMC2887484  PMID: 20347732
15.  Mastery Learning of Advanced Cardiac Life Support Skills by Internal Medicine Residents Using Simulation Technology and Deliberate Practice 
BACKGROUND
Internal medicine residents must be competent in advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) for board certification.
OBJECTIVE
To use a medical simulator to assess postgraduate year 2 (PGY-2) residents' baseline proficiency in ACLS scenarios and evaluate the impact of an educational intervention grounded in deliberate practice on skill development to mastery standards.
DESIGN
Pretest-posttest design without control group. After baseline evaluation, residents received 4, 2-hour ACLS education sessions using a medical simulator. Residents were then retested. Residents who did not achieve a research-derived minimum passing score (MPS) on each ACLS problem had more deliberate practice and were retested until the MPS was reached.
PARTICIPANTS
Forty-one PGY-2 internal medicine residents in a university-affiliated program.
MEASUREMENTS
Observational checklists based on American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines with interrater and internal consistency reliability estimates; deliberate practice time needed for residents to achieve minimum competency standards; demographics; United States Medical Licensing Examination Step 1 and Step 2 scores; and resident ratings of program quality and utility.
RESULTS
Performance improved significantly after simulator training. All residents met or exceeded the mastery competency standard. The amount of practice time needed to reach the MPS was a powerful (negative) predictor of posttest performance. The education program was rated highly.
CONCLUSIONS
A curriculum featuring deliberate practice dramatically increased the skills of residents in ACLS scenarios. Residents needed different amounts of training time to achieve minimum competency standards. Residents enjoy training, evaluation, and feedback in a simulated clinical environment. This mastery learning program and other competency-based efforts illustrate outcome-based medical education that is now prominent in accreditation reform of residency education.
doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2006.00341.x
PMCID: PMC1828088  PMID: 16637824
mastery learning; medical simulation; residency education
16.  An initiative to improve adherence to evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of URIs, sinusitis, and pharyngitis 
Background
Upper respiratory infections, acute sinus infections, and sore throats are common symptoms that cause patients to seek medical care. Despite well-established treatment guidelines, studies indicate that antibiotics are prescribed far more frequently than appropriate, raising a multitude of clinical issues.
Methods
The primary goal of this study was to increase guideline adherence rates for acute sinusitis, pharyngitis, and upper respiratory tract infections (URIs). This study was the first Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle in a quality improvement program at an internal medicine resident faculty practice at a university-affiliated community hospital internal medicine residency program. To improve guideline adherence for respiratory infections, a package of small-scale interventions was implemented aimed at improving patient and provider education regarding viral and bacterial infections and the necessity for antibiotics. The data from this study was compared with a previously published study in this practice, which evaluated the adherence rates for the treatment guidelines before the changes, to determine effectiveness of the modifications. After the first PDSA cycle, providers were surveyed to determine barriers to adherence to antibiotic prescribing guidelines.
Results
After the interventions, antibiotic guideline adherence for URI improved from a rate of 79.28 to 88.58% with a p-value of 0.004. The increase of adherence rates for sinusitis and pharyngitis were 41.7–57.58% (p=0.086) and 24.0–25.0% (p=0.918), respectively. The overall change in guideline adherence for the three conditions increased from 57.2 to 78.6% with the implementations (p<0.001). In planning for future PDSA cycles, a fishbone diagram was constructed in order to identify all perceived facets of the problem of non-adherence to the treatment guidelines for URIs, sinusitis, and pharyngitis. From the fishbone diagram and the provider survey, several potential directions for future work are discussed.
Conclusions
Passive interventions can result in small changes in antibiotic guideline adherence, but further PDSA cycles using more active methodologies are needed.
doi:10.3402/jchimp.v4.22958
PMCID: PMC3937558  PMID: 24596644
antibiotic; guideline; adherence
17.  Description and evaluation of an EBM curriculum using a block rotation 
Background
While previous authors have emphasized the importance of integrating and reinforcing evidence-based medicine (EBM) skills in residency, there are few published examples of such curricula. We designed an EBM curriculum to train family practice interns in essential EBM skills for information mastery using clinical questions generated by the family practice inpatient service. We sought to evaluate the impact of this curriculum on interns, residents, and faculty.
Methods
Interns (n = 13) were asked to self-assess their level of confidence in basic EBM skills before and after their 2-week EBM rotation. Residents (n = 21) and faculty (n = 12) were asked to assess how often the answers provided by the EBM intern to the inpatient service changed medical care. In addition, residents were asked to report how often they used their EBM skills and how often EBM concepts and tools were used in teaching by senior residents and faculty. Faculty were asked if the EBM curriculum had increased their use of EBM in practice and in teaching.
Results
Interns significantly increased their confidence over the course of the rotation. Residents and faculty felt that the answers provided by the EBM intern provided useful information and led to changes in patient care. Faculty reported incorporating EBM into their teaching (92%) and practice (75%). Residents reported applying the EBM skills they learned to patient care (86%) and that these skills were reinforced in the teaching they received outside of the rotation (81%). All residents and 11 of 12 faculty felt that the EBM curriculum had improved patient care.
Conclusions
To our knowledge, this is the first published EBM curriculum using an individual block rotation format. As such, it may provide an alternative model for teaching and incorporating EBM into a residency program.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-4-19
PMCID: PMC524496  PMID: 15476556
18.  Setting a Fair Performance Standard for Physicians’ Quality of Patient Care 
Background
Assessing physicians’ clinical performance using statistically sound, evidence-based measures is challenging. Little research has focused on methodological approaches to setting performance standards to which physicians are being held accountable.
Objective
Determine if a rigorous approach for setting an objective, credible standard of minimally-acceptable performance could be used for practicing physicians caring for diabetic patients.
Design
Retrospective cohort study.
Participants
Nine hundred and fifty-seven physicians from the United States with time-limited certification in internal medicine or a subspecialty.
Main Measures
The ABIM Diabetes Practice Improvement Module was used to collect data on ten clinical and two patient experience measures. A panel of eight internists/subspecialists representing essential perspectives of clinical practice applied an adaptation of the Angoff method to judge how physicians who provide minimally-acceptable care would perform on individual measures to establish performance thresholds. Panelists then rated each measure’s relative importance and the Dunn–Rankin method was applied to establish scoring weights for the composite measure. Physician characteristics were used to support the standard-setting outcome.
Key Results
Physicians abstracted 20,131 patient charts and 18,974 patient surveys were completed. The panel established reasonable performance thresholds and importance weights, yielding a standard of 48.51 (out of 100 possible points) on the composite measure with high classification accuracy (0.98). The 38 (4%) outlier physicians who did not meet the standard had lower ratings of overall clinical competence and professional behavior/attitude from former residency program directors (p = 0.01 and p = 0.006, respectively), lower Internal Medicine certification and maintenance of certification examination scores (p = 0.005 and p < 0.001, respectively), and primarily worked as solo practitioners (p = 0.02).
Conclusions
The standard-setting method yielded a credible, defensible performance standard for diabetes care based on informed judgment that resulted in a reasonable, reproducible outcome. Our method represents one approach to identifying outlier physicians for intervention to protect patients.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1572-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1572-x
PMCID: PMC3077491  PMID: 21104453
clinical performance assessment; standard setting; composite measures; diabetes care
19.  The resident-as-teacher educational challenge: a needs assessment survey at the National Autonomous University of Mexico Faculty of Medicine 
BMC Medical Education  2010;10:17.
Background
The role of residents as educators is increasingly recognized, since it impacts residents, interns, medical students and other healthcare professionals. A widespread implementation of resident-as-teacher courses in developed countries' medical schools has occurred, with variable results. There is a dearth of information about this theme in developing countries. The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) Faculty of Medicine has more than 50% of the residency programs' physician population in Mexico. This report describes a needs assessment survey for a resident as teacher program at our institution.
Methods
A cross-sectional descriptive survey was developed based on a review of the available literature and discussion by an expert multidisciplinary committee. The goal was to identify the residents' attitudes, academic needs and preferred educational strategies regarding resident-as-teacher activities throughout the residency. The survey was piloted and modified accordingly. The paper anonymous survey was sent to 7,685 residents, the total population of medical residents in UNAM programs in the country.
Results
There was a 65.7% return rate (5,186 questionnaires), a broad and representative sample of the student population. The residents felt they had knowledge and were competent in medical education, but the majority felt a need to improve their knowledge and skills in this discipline. Most residents (92.5%) felt that their role as educators of medical students, interns and other residents was important/very important. They estimated that 45.5% of their learning came from other residents. Ninety percent stated that it was necessary to be trained in teaching skills. The themes identified to include in the educational intervention were mostly clinically oriented. The educational strategies in order of preference were interactive lectures with a professor, small groups with a moderator, material available in a website for self-learning, printed material for self-study and homework, and small group web-based learning.
Conclusions
There is a large unmet need to implement educational interventions to improve residents' educational skills in postgraduate educational programs in developing countries. Most perceived needs of residents are practical and clinically oriented, and they prefer traditional educational strategies. Resident as teachers educational interventions need to be designed taking into account local needs and resources.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-10-17
PMCID: PMC2830225  PMID: 20156365
20.  Resident Self-Assessment and Self-Reflection: University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Five-Year Study 
BACKGROUND
Chart review represents a critical cornerstone for practice-based learning and improvement in our internal medicine residency program.
OBJECTIVE
To document residents’ performance monitoring and improvement skills in their continuity clinics, their satisfaction with practice-based learning and improvement, and their ability to self-reflect on their performance.
DESIGN
Retrospective longitudinal design with repeated measures.
PARTICIPANTS
Eighty Internal Medicine residents abstracted data for 3 consecutive years from the medical records of their 4,390 patients in the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) Hospital and Clinics and William S. Middleton Veterans Administration (VA) outpatient clinics.
MEASUREMENT
Logistic modeling was used to determine the effect of postgraduate year, resident sex, graduation cohort, and clinic setting on residents’ “compliance rate” on 17 nationally recognized health screening and chronic disease management parameters from 2003 to 2007.
RESULTS
Residents’ adherence to national preventive and chronic disease standards increased significantly from intern to subsequent years for administering immunizations, screening for diabetes, cholesterol, cancer, and behavioral risks, and for management of diabetes. Of the residents, 92% found the chart review exercise beneficial, with 63% reporting gains in understanding about their medical practices, 26% reflecting on specific gaps in their practices, and 8% taking critical action to improve their patient outcomes.
CONCLUSIONS
This paper provides support for the feasibility and practicality of this limited-cost method of chart review. It also directs our residency program’s attention in the continuity clinic to a key area important to internal medicine training programs by highlighting the potential benefit of enhancing residents’ self-reflection skills.
doi:10.1007/s11606-009-0904-1
PMCID: PMC2642556  PMID: 19156469
practice-based learning and improvement; graduate medical education; chart review; ambulatory care settings
21.  An Assessment of Patient-Based and Practice Infrastructure–Based Measures of the Patient-Centered Medical Home: Do We Need to Ask the Patient? 
Health Services Research  2011;47(1 Pt 1):4-21.
Objective
To examine the importance of patient-based measures and practice infrastructure measures of the patient-centered medical home (PCMH).
Data Sources
A total of 3,671 patient surveys of 202 physicians completing the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) 2006 Comprehensive Care Practice Improvement Module and 14,457 patient chart reviews from 592 physicians completing ABIM's 2007 Diabetes and Hypertension Practice Improvement Module.
Methodology
We estimated the association of patient-centered care and practice infrastructure measures with patient rating of physician quality. We then estimated the association of practice infrastructure and patient rating of care quality with blood pressure (BP) control.
Results
Patient-centered care measures dominated practice infrastructure as predictors of patient rating of physician quality. Having all patient-centered care measures in place versus none was associated with an absolute 75.2 percent increase in the likelihood of receiving a top rating. Both patient rating of care quality and practice infrastructure predicted BP control. Receiving a rating of excellent on care quality from all patients was associated with an absolute 4.2 percent improvement in BP control. For reaching the maximum practice-infrastructure score, this figure was 4.5 percent.
Conclusion
Assessment of physician practices for PCMH qualification should consider both patient based patient-centered care measures and practice infrastructure measures.
doi:10.1111/j.1475-6773.2011.01302.x
PMCID: PMC3447253  PMID: 22092245
Patient-centered care; practice infrastructure; medical home; blood pressure control
22.  Quality and Safety Training in Primary Care: Making an Impact 
Purpose
Preparing residents for future practice, knowledge, and skills in quality improvement and safety (QI/S) is a requisite element of graduate medical education. Despite many challenges, residency programs must consider new curricular innovations to meet the requirements. We report the effectiveness of a primary care QI/S curriculum and the role of the chief resident in quality and patient safety in facilitating it.
Method
Through the Veterans Administration Graduate Medical Education Enhancement Program, we added a position for a chief resident in quality and patient safety, and 4 full-time equivalent internal medicine residents, to develop the Primary Care Interprofessional Patient-Centered Quality Care Training Curriculum. The curriculum includes a first-or second-year, 1-month block rotation that serves as a foundational experience in QI/S and interprofessional care. The responsibilities of the chief resident in quality and patient safety included organizing and teaching the QI/S curriculum and mentoring resident projects. Evaluation included prerotation and postrotation surveys of self-assessed QI/S knowledge, abilities, skills, beliefs, and commitment (KASBC); an end-of-the-year KASBC; prerotation and postrotation knowledge test; and postrotation and faculty surveys.
Results
Comparisons of prerotation and postrotation KASBC indicated significant self-assessed improvements in 4 of 5 KASBC domains: knowledge (P < .001), ability (P < .001), skills (P < .001), and belief (P < .03), which were sustained on the end-of-the-year survey. The knowledge test demonstrated increased QI/S knowledge (P  =  .002). Results of the postrotation survey indicate strong satisfaction with the curriculum, with 76% (25 of 33) and 70% (23 of 33) of the residents rating the quality and safety curricula as always or usually educational. Most faculty members acknowledged that the chief resident in quality and patient safety enhanced both faculty and resident QI/S interest and participation in projects.
Conclusions
Our primary care QI/S curriculum was associated with improved and persistent resident self-perceived knowledge, abilities, and skills and increased knowledge-based scores of QI/S. The chief resident in quality and patient safety played an important role in overseeing the curriculum, teaching, and providing leadership.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-11-00322.1
PMCID: PMC3546584  PMID: 24294431
23.  Use of a Structured Template to Facilitate Practice-Based Learning and Improvement Projects 
Background
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requires residency programs to meet and demonstrate outcomes across 6 competencies. Measuring residents' competency in practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) is particularly challenging.
Purpose
We developed an educational tool to meet ACGME requirements for PBLI. The PBLI template helped programs document quality improvement (QI) projects and supported increased scholarly activity surrounding PBLI learning.
Methods
We reviewed program requirements for 43 residency and fellowship programs and identified specific PBLI requirements for QI activities. We also examined ACGME Program Information Form responses on PBLI core competency questions surrounding QI projects for program sites visited in 2008–2009. Data were integrated by a multidisciplinary committee to develop a peer-protected PBLI template guiding programs through process, documentation, and evaluation of QI projects. All steps were reviewed and approved through our GME Committee structure.
Results
An electronic template, companion checklist, and evaluation form were developed using identified project characteristics to guide programs through the PBLI process and facilitate documentation and evaluation of the process. During a 24 month period, 27 programs have completed PBLI projects, and 15 have reviewed the template with their education committees, but have not initiated projects using the template.
Discussion
The development of the tool generated program leaders' support because the tool enhanced the ability to meet program-specific objectives. The peer-protected status of this document for confidentiality and from discovery has been beneficial for program usage. The document aggregates data on PBLI and QI initiatives, offers opportunities to increase scholarship in QI, and meets the ACGME goal of linking measures to outcomes important to meeting accreditation requirements at the program and institutional level.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-11-00195.1
PMCID: PMC3399615  PMID: 23730444
24.  A Multidisciplinary Approach for Teaching Systems-Based Practice to Internal Medicine Residents 
Background
Rapid growth in the complexity of the health care environment (including monitoring systems for health care quality and patient safety) may result in graduating internists not being adequately prepared for the demands the system places on them. In response, the Residency Review Committee for Internal Medicine created the Educational Innovations Project (EIP) to encourage select residency training programs to develop new strategies and methods to meet changing demands in graduate medical education.
Methods
As part of the EIP, our program created an innovative administrative internship. This multiyear curriculum provides systems-based practice training and consists of a series of rotations that take place during the 3 years of internal medicine residency. Each session involves close interaction with the nonphysician personnel who are instrumental in making our institution a functional and cohesive unit. To assess the potential impact of the rotations, we survey senior residents, recent graduates, and faculty educators. In conjunction with the Performance and Patient Experience departments of the hospital, we track several systems-based practice metrics for residents, including compliance with core health care measures, length of stay, and patient satisfaction.
Results
Residents recognize the need to develop systems-based practice skills, to readily participate in structured curricula designed to enhance such skills, and to provide leadership in organizing and publishing quality improvement initiatives, and upon graduation, they may lament that they did not receive even more vigorous training in these areas.
Conclusion
Although internal medicine residencies continue to improve their training in systems-based practice, our experience suggests that an even greater emphasis on these skills may be warranted.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-10-00037.1
PMCID: PMC3186277  PMID: 22379526
25.  Procedural Experience and Comfort Level in Internal Medicine Trainees 
BACKGROUND
The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) has recommended a specific number of procedures be done as a minimum standard for ensuring competence in various medical procedures. These minimum standards were determined by consensus of an expert panel and may not reflect actual procedural comfort or competence.
OBJECTIVE
To estimate the minimum number of selected procedures at which a majority of internal medicine trainees become comfortable performing that procedure.
DESIGN
Cross-sectional, self-administered survey.
SETTING
A military-based, a community-based, and 2 university-based programs.
PARTICIPANTS
Two hundred thirty-two internal medicine residents.
MEASUREMENTS
Survey questions included number of specific procedures performed, comfort level with performing specific procedures, and whether respondents desired further training in specific procedures. The comfort threshold for a given procedure was defined as the number of procedures at which two thirds or more of the respondents reported being comfortable or very comfortable performing that procedure.
RESULTS
For three of seven procedures selected, residents were comfortable performing the procedure at or below the number recommended by the ABIM as a minimum requirement. However, residents needed more procedures than recommended by the ABIM to feel comfortable with central venous line placement, knee joint aspiration, lumbar puncture, and thoracentesis. Using multivariate logistic regression analysis, variables independently associated with greater comfort performing selected procedures included increased number performed, more years of training, male gender, career goals, and for skin biopsy, training in the community-based program. Except for skin biopsy, comfort level was independent of training site. A significant number of advanced-year house officers in some programs had little experience in performing selected common ambulatory procedures.
CONCLUSION
Minimum standards for certifying internal medicine residents may need to be reexamined in light of house officer comfort level performing selected procedures.
doi:10.1046/j.1525-1497.2000.91104.x
PMCID: PMC1495602  PMID: 11089715
ABIM; procedure comfort level; residents

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