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.
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.
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.
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.
Resident education; Gender; Elective; Subspecialty; Graduate medical education
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) invokes evidence-based medicine (EBM) principles through the practice-based learning core competency. The authors hypothesized that among a representative sample of emergency medicine (EM) residency programs, a wide variability in EBM resident training priorities, faculty expertise expectations, and curricula exists.
The primary objective was to obtain descriptive data regarding EBM practices and expectations from EM physician educators. Our secondary objective was to assess differences in EBM educational priorities among journal club directors compared with non–journal club directors.
A 19-question survey was developed by a group of recognized EBM curriculum innovators and then disseminated to Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors (CORD) conference participants, assessing their opinions regarding essential EBM skill sets and EBM curricular expectations for residents and faculty at their home institutions. The survey instrument also identified the degree of interest respondents had in receiving a free monthly EBM journal club curriculum.
A total of 157 individuals registered for the conference, and 98 completed the survey. Seventy-seven (77% of respondents) were either residency program directors or assistant / associate program directors. The majority of participants were from university-based programs and in practice at least 5 years. Respondents reported the ability to identify flawed research (45%), apply research findings to patient care (43%), and comprehend research methodology (33%) as the most important resident skill sets. The majority of respondents reported no formal journal club or EBM curricula (75%) and do not utilize structured critical appraisal instruments (71%) when reviewing the literature. While journal club directors believed that resident learners’ most important EBM skill is to identify secondary peer-reviewed resources, non–journal club directors identified residents’ ability to distinguish significantly flawed research as the key skill to develop. Interest in receiving a free monthly EBM journal club curriculum was widely accepted (89%).
Attaining EBM proficiency is an expected outcome of graduate medical education (GME) training, although the specific domains of anticipated expertise differ between faculty and residents. Few respondents currently use a formalized curriculum to guide the development of EBM skill sets. There appears to be a high level of interest in obtaining EBM journal club educational content in a structured format. Measuring the effects of providing journal club curriculum content in conjunction with other EBM interventions may warrant further investigation.
evidence-based medicine; knowledge translation; faculty development
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Outcome Project requires that residency program directors objectively document that their residents achieve competence in 6 general dimensions of practice.
In November 2007, the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) and the ACGME initiated the development of milestones for internal medicine residency training. ABIM and ACGME convened a 33-member milestones task force made up of program directors, experts in evaluation and quality, and representatives of internal medicine stakeholder organizations. This article reports on the development process and the resulting list of proposed milestones for each ACGME competency.
The task force adopted the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition as a framework the internal medicine milestones, and calibrated the milestones with the expectation that residents achieve, at a minimum, the “competency” level in the 5-step progression by the completion of residency. The task force also developed general recommendations for strategies to evaluate the milestones.
The milestones resulting from this effort will promote competency-based resident education in internal medicine, and will allow program directors to track the progress of residents and inform decisions regarding promotion and readiness for independent practice. In addition, the milestones may guide curriculum development, suggest specific assessment strategies, provide benchmarks for resident self-directed assessment-seeking, and assist remediation by facilitating identification of specific deficits. Finally, by making explicit the profession's expectations for graduates and providing a degree of national standardization in evaluation, the milestones may improve public accountability for residency training.
The dramatic increase in the U.S. elderly population expected over the coming decades will place a heavy strain on the current health care system. General internal medicine (GIM) residents need to be prepared to take care of this population. In this study, we document the current and future trends in geriatric education in GIM residency programs.
DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS
An original survey was mailed to all the GIM residency directors in the United States (N = 390).
A 53% response rate was achieved (n = 206). Ninety-three percent of GIM residencies had a required geriatrics curriculum. Seventy one percent of the programs required 13 to 36 half days of geriatric medicine clinical training during the 3-year residency, and 29% required 12 half days or less of clinical training. Nursing homes, outpatient geriatric assessment centers, and nongeriatric ambulatory settings were the predominant training sites for geriatrics in GIM. Training was most often offered in a block format. The average number of physician faculty available to teach geriatrics was 6.4 per program (2.8 full-time equivalents). Conflicting time demands with other curricula was ranked as the most significant barrier to geriatric education.
A required geriatric medicine curriculum is now included in most GIM residency programs. Variability in the amount of time devoted to geriatrics exists across GIM residencies. Residents in some programs spend very little time in specific, required geriatric medicine clinical experiences. The results of this survey can guide the development of future curricular content and structure. Emphasizing geriatrics in GIM residencies helps ensure that these residents are equipped to care for the expanding aging population.
geriatric medicine education; general internal medicine; graduate medical education
Currently, there are more residents enrolled in cardiology training programs in Canada than in immunology, pharmacology, rheumatology, infectious diseases, geriatrics and endocrinology combined. There is no published data regarding the proportion of Canadian internal medicine residents applying to the various subspecialties, or the factors that residents consider important when deciding which subspecialty to pursue. To address the concern about physician imbalances in internal medicine subspecialties, we need to examine the factors that motivate residents when making career decisions.
In this two-phase study, Canadian internal medicine residents participating in the post graduate year 4 (PGY4) subspecialty match were invited to participate in a web-based survey and focus group discussions. The focus group discussions were based on issues identified from the survey results. Analysis of focus group transcripts grew on grounded theory.
110 PGY3 residents participating in the PGY4 subspecialty match from 10 participating Canadian universities participated in the web-based survey (54% response rate). 22 residents from 3 different training programs participated in 4 focus groups held across Canada. Our study found that residents are choosing careers that provide intellectual stimulation, are consistent with their personality, and that provide a challenge in diagnosis. From our focus group discussions it appears that lifestyle, role models, mentorship and the experience of the resident with the specialty appear to be equally important in career decisions. Males are more likely to choose procedure based specialties and are more concerned with the reputation of the specialty as well as the anticipated salary. In contrast, residents choosing non-procedure based specialties are more concerned with issues related to lifestyle, including work-related stress, work hours and time for leisure as well as the patient populations they are treating.
This study suggests that internal medicine trainees, and particularly males, are increasingly choosing procedure-based specialties while non-procedure based specialties, and in particular general internal medicine, are losing appeal. We need to implement strategies to ensure positive rotation experiences, exposure to role models, improved lifestyle and job satisfaction as well as payment schedules that are equitable between disciplines in order to attract residents to less popular career choices.
The Integrative Medicine in Residency (IMR) program, a 200-hour Internet-based, collaborative educational initiative was implemented in 8 family medicine residency programs and has shown a potential to serve as a national model for incorporating training in integrative/complementary/alternative medicine in graduate medical education.
The curriculum content was designed based on a needs assessment and a set of competencies for graduate medical education developed following the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education outcome project guidelines. The content was delivered through distributed online learning and included onsite activities. A modular format allowed for a flexible implementation in different residency settings.
To assess the feasibility of implementing the curriculum, a multimodal evaluation was utilized, including: (1) residents' evaluation of the curriculum; (2) residents' competencies evaluation through medical knowledge testing, self-assessment, direct observations, and reflections; and (3) residents' wellness and well-being through behavioral assessments.
The class of 2011 (n = 61) had a high rate of curriculum completion in the first and second year (98.7% and 84.2%) and course evaluations on meeting objectives, clinical utility, and functioning of the technology were highly rated. There was a statistically significant improvement in medical knowledge test scores for questions aligned with content for both the PGY-1 and PGY-2 courses.
The IMR program is an advance in the national effort to make training in integrative medicine available to physicians on a broad scale and is a success in terms of online education. Evaluation suggests that this program is feasible for implementation and acceptable to residents despite the many pressures of residency.
This article, developed for the Betty Ford Institute Consensus Conference on Graduate Medical Education (December, 2008), presents a model curriculum for Family Medicine residency training in substance abuse.
The authors reviewed reports of past Family Medicine curriculum development efforts, previously-identified barriers to education in high risk substance use, approaches to overcoming these barriers, and current training guidelines of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and their Family Medicine Residency Review Committee. A proposed eight-module curriculum was developed, based on substance abuse competencies defined by Project MAINSTREAM and linked to core competencies defined by the ACGME. The curriculum provides basic training in high risk substance use to all residents, while also addressing current training challenges presented by U.S. work hour regulations, increasing international diversity of Family Medicine resident trainees, and emerging new primary care practice models.
This paper offers a core curriculum, focused on screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment, which can be adapted by residency programs to meet their individual needs. The curriculum encourages direct observation of residents to ensure that core skills are learned and trains residents with several "new skills" that will expand the basket of substance abuse services they will be equipped to provide as they enter practice.
Broad-based implementation of a comprehensive Family Medicine residency curriculum should increase the ability of family physicians to provide basic substance abuse services in a primary care context. Such efforts should be coupled with faculty development initiatives which ensure that sufficient trained faculty are available to teach these concepts and with efforts by major Family Medicine organizations to implement and enforce residency requirements for substance abuse training.
Education in emergency ultrasound (EUS) has become an essential part of emergency medicine (EM) resident training. In 2009, comprehensive residency training guidelines were published to ensure proficiency in ultrasound education. The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) recommends that 150 ultrasound exams be performed for physician competency. Our goal is to evaluate the current ultrasound practices among EM residency programs and assess the need for further formalization of EUS training.
We generated a survey using an online survey tool and administered via the internet. The survey consisted of 25 questions that included multiple choice and free text answers. These online survey links were sent via email to EM ultrasound directors at all 149 American College of Graduate Medical Education EM residency programs in April 2008. We surveyed programs regarding EUS curriculum and residency proficiency requirements and descriptive statistics were used to report the survey findings.
Sixty-five residency programs responded to the survey. The average number of ultrasound exams required by programs for EUS competency was 137 scans. However, the majority of programs 42/65 (64%) require their residents to obtain 150 scans or greater for competency. Fifty-one out of 64 (79%) programs reported having a structured ultrasound curriculum while 14/64 (21%) of programs reported that EUS training is primarily resident self-directed. In terms of faculty credentialing, 29/62 (47%) of residency programs have greater than 50% of faculty credentialed. Forty-four out of 61 (72%) programs make EUS a required rotation. Thirty-four out of 63 (54%) programs felt that they were meeting all their goals for resident EUS education.
Currently discrepancies exist between EM residency programs in ultrasound curriculum and perceived needs for achieving proficiency in EUS. Although a majority of residency programs require 150 ultrasound exams or more to achieve resident competency, overall the average number of scans required by all programs is 137 exams. This number is less than that recommended by ACEP for physician competency. These data suggest that guidelines are needed to help standardize ultrasound training for all EM residency programs.
To graduate internal medicine residents with basic competency in palliative care, we employ a two-pronged strategy targeted at both residents and attending physicians as learners. The first prong provides a knowledge foundation using web-based learning programs designed specifically for residents and clinical faculty members. The second prong is assessment of resident competency in key palliative care domains by faculty members using direct observation during clinical rotations. The faculty training program contains Competency Assessment Tools addressing 19 topics distributed amongst four broad palliative care domains designed to assist faculty members in making the clinical competency assessments. Residents are required to complete their web-based training by the end of their internship year; they must demonstrate competency in one skill from each of the four broad palliative care domains prior to graduation. Resident and faculty evaluation of the training programs is favorable. Outcome-based measures are planned to evaluate long-term program effectiveness.
Internal medicine residents; Palliative care; Faculty members; Competency Assessment Tools; Faculty training program
In the United States, the Accreditation Council of graduate medical education (ACGME) requires all accredited Internal medicine residency training programs to facilitate resident scholarly activities. However, clinical experience and medical education still remain the main focus of graduate medical education in many Internal Medicine (IM) residency-training programs. Left to design the structure, process and outcome evaluation of the ACGME research requirement, residency-training programs are faced with numerous barriers. Many residency programs report having been cited by the ACGME residency review committee in IM for lack of scholarly activity by residents.
We would like to share our experience at Lincoln Hospital, an affiliate of Weill Medical College Cornell University New York, in designing and implementing a successful structured research curriculum based on ACGME competencies taught during a dedicated "research rotation".
Since the inception of the research rotation in 2004, participation of our residents among scholarly activities has substantially increased. Our residents increasingly believe and appreciate that research is an integral component of residency training and essential for practice of medicine.
Internal medicine residents' outlook in research can be significantly improved using a research curriculum offered through a structured and dedicated research rotation. This is exemplified by the improvement noted in resident satisfaction, their participation in scholarly activities and resident research outcomes since the inception of the research rotation in our internal medicine training program.
General Internal Medicine (GIM) has recently been approved as a subspecialty by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. As such, there is a need to define areas of knowledge that a General Internist must learn in those two years of training. There is limited literature as to what competencies are needed in a GIM practice. Draft competencies for GIM (4th and 5th year residents in internal medicine) training were developed over eight years with input from many stakeholders. Practicing General Internists were surveyed and asked their perspective as to the level of importance of each of these competencies for GIM training. They were also asked if training gaps exist in current training programs. The survey was offered widely online in both English and French to gain perspectives from as many different contexts as possible.
157 General Internists, in practice on average for 15 years, responded from all of Canada's provinces and territories. Practice profiles were diverse (large urban centers to rural centers). The majority of the competencies surveyed were perceived as important to attain at least proficiency in. Perioperative care, risk reduction, and the management of common, emergent, and complex internal medicine problems were identified as key areas to focus training programs on, with respondents perceiving these should be mastered to an expert level. Training gaps were identified, most frequently in that of the manager role (example managing practice).
This is the first study we are aware of to attempt to isolate the opinions of practicing Canadian General Internists as to the major competencies that should be mastered as a General Internist. We suggest that "generalism" in the context of GIM, does not mean a bit of knowledge about everything but that defined objectives for training in this 'newest' of Royal College subspecialties can be identified. This includes mastery of core areas such as perioperative care, risk reduction, and management of common, emergent and multiple internal medicine problems. The training gaps identified need to be addressed to ensure that General Internists continue to provide excellence in health care delivery.
Family medicine residents across Canada represent a unique body of physicians with exciting and different training experiences. Some 30 residents from each of the 16 university-administered Canadian family medicine programs meet twice annually as a subcommittee of the Canadian Association of Internes and Residents (CAIR), to exchange ideas and discuss issues of relevance to family medicine programs. The CAIR Committee on Family Medicine (CAIR-CFM) has direct liaison with the College of Family Physicians of Canada through its Board of Directors and various educational committees. CAIR-CFM has also been actively involved in other independent projects directly affecting the training of family medicine residents, including a review of every family medicine program, accreditation of programs, and policy recommendations.
Canadian Association of Internes and Residents; family medicine programs; residents
There are no nationwide data on the methods residency programs are using to assess trainee competence. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has recommended tools that programs can use to evaluate their trainees. It is unknown if programs are adhering to these recommendations.
To describe evaluation methods used by our nation’s internal medicine residency programs and assess adherence to ACGME methodological recommendations for evaluation.
All internal medicine programs registered with the Association of Program Directors of Internal Medicine (APDIM).
Descriptive statistics of programs and tools used to evaluate competence; compliance with ACGME recommended evaluative methods.
The response rate was 70%. Programs were using an average of 4.2–6.0 tools to evaluate their trainees with heavy reliance on rating forms. Direct observation and practice and data-based tools were used much less frequently. Most programs were using at least 1 of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)’s “most desirable” methods of evaluation for all 6 measures of trainee competence. These programs had higher support staff to resident ratios than programs using less desirable evaluative methods.
Residency programs are using a large number and variety of tools for evaluating the competence of their trainees. Most are complying with ACGME recommended methods of evaluation especially if the support staff to resident ratio is high.
graduate medical education; residency; ACGME; competency
Teaching the content of clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) is important to both clinical care and graduate medical education. The objective of this study was to determine the characteristics of curricula for teaching the content of CPGs in family medicine and internal medicine residency programs in the United States.
We surveyed the directors of family medicine and internal medicine residency programs in the United States. The questionnaire included questions about the characteristics of the teaching of CPGs: goals and objectives, educational activities, evaluation, aspects of CPGs that the program teaches, the methods of making texts of CPGs available to residents, and the major barriers to teaching CPGs.
Of 434 programs responding (out of 839, 52%), 14% percent reported having written goals and objectives related to teaching CPGs. The most frequently taught aspect was the content of specific CPGs (76%). The top two educational strategies used were didactic sessions (76%) and journal clubs (64%). Auditing for adherence by residents was the primary evaluation strategy (44%), although 36% of program directors conducted no evaluation. Programs made texts of CPGs available to residents most commonly in the form of paper copies (54%) while the most important barrier was time constraints on faculty (56%).
Residency programs teach different aspects of CPGs to varying degrees, and the majority uses educational strategies not supported by research evidence.
This study seeks to evaluate the practice patterns of current combined emergency medicine/internal medicine (EM/IM) residents during their training and compare them to the typical practice patterns of EM/IM graduates. We further seek to characterize how these current residents perceive the EM/IM physician's niche.
This is a multi-institution, cross-sectional, survey-based cohort study. Between June 2008 and July 2008, all 112 residents of the 11 EM/IM programs listed by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education were contacted and asked to complete a survey concerning plans for certification, fellowship, and practice setting.
The adjusted response rate was 71%. All respondents anticipated certifying in both specialties, with 47% intending to pursue fellowships. Most residents (97%) allotted time to both EM and IM, with a median time of 70% and 30%, respectively. Concerning academic medicine, 81% indicated intent to practice academic medicine, and 96% planned to allocate at least 10% of their future time to a university/academic setting. In evaluating satisfaction, 94% were (1) satisfied with their residency choice, (2) believed that a combined residency will advance their career, and (3) would repeat a combined residency if given the opportunity.
Current EM/IM residents were very content with their training and the overwhelming majority of residents plan to devote time to the practice of academic medicine. Relative to the practice patterns previously observed in EM/IM graduates, the current residents are more inclined toward pursuing fellowships and practicing both specialties.
1) To describe how internal medicine residency programs fulfill the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) scholarly activity training requirement including the current context of resident scholarly work, and 2) to compare findings between university and nonuniversity programs.
Cross-sectional mailed survey.
ACGME-accredited internal medicine residency programs.
Internal medicine residency program directors.
Data were collected on 1) interpretation of the scholarly activity requirement, 2) support for resident scholarship, 3) scholarly activities of residents, 4) attitudes toward resident research, and 5) program characteristics. University and nonuniversity programs were compared.
The response rate was 78%. Most residents completed a topic review with presentation (median, 100%) to fulfill the requirement. Residents at nonuniversity programs were more likely to complete case reports (median, 40% vs 25%; P =.04) and present at local or regional meetings (median, 25% vs 20%; P =.01), and were just as likely to conduct hypothesis-driven research (median, 20% vs 20%; P =.75) and present nationally (median, 10% vs 5%; P =.10) as residents at university programs. Nonuniversity programs were more likely to report lack of faculty mentors (61% vs 31%; P <.001) and resident interest (55% vs 40%; P =.01) as major barriers to resident scholarship. Programs support resident scholarship through research curricula (47%), funding (46%), and protected time (32%).
Internal medicine residents complete a variety of projects to fulfill the scholarly activity requirement. Nonuniversity programs are doing as much as university programs in meeting the requirement and supporting resident scholarship despite reporting significant barriers.
ACGME; resident research; medical education; national survey
The impact of managed care in the 1990s and the need for more broadly trained primary care physicians led the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Family Practice to explore ways to collaboratively train primary care physicians. One proposed solution was a combined residency incorporating the training curriculums of both boards in an integrated fashion. In 1995, the Alton Ochsner Medical Foundation Combined Family Practice and Internal Medicine Residency Program was one of the first to be approved by the two boards. The first residents began training in July 1996. Due to overlap in curriculums, completion for both boards is possible in 48 months as opposed to the 72 months a consecutive approach would require. The first graduates completed the program in July 2000.
The combined residents rotate on both the Family Practice inpatient service and the General Internal Medicine wards and participate in continuity care clinics and precepting in both core programs. Facilities for the program involve only existing clinics and administrative personnel. Residents serve as primary care physicians for a mixed ethnic, middle-class patient population atOchsner's New Orleans East satellite clinic, provide longitudinal obstetric and pediatric care at an inner city clinic, and complete a rural primary care rotation. Inservice examination scores have been consistently high with several combined residents scoring at the top United States level on both examinations. The program has matched with our highest ranked students over each year of the program despite a marked decline in US graduates entering primary care fields. Graduates of the combined program are ideal staff for either medical schools or residency programs of either core program.
While this residency is in its early stages, both boards have mandated an indepth evaluation to determine the quality and outcomes of training. The results of a recent survey of current Ochsner residents assessing their perceptions of the combined program were encouraging. We plan to track our graduates and compare them with recent graduates of the two core programs in order to document long-term impact.
Many have called for ambulatory training redesign in internal medicine (IM) residencies to increase primary care career outcomes. Many believe dysfunctional, clinic environments are a key barrier to meaningful ambulatory education, but little is actually known about the educational milieu of continuity clinics nationwide.
We wished to describe the infrastructure and educational milieu at resident continuity clinics and assess clinic readiness to meet new IM-RRC requirements.
National survey of ACGME accredited IM training programs.
Directors of academic and community-based continuity clinics.
Two hundred and twenty-one out of 365 (62%) of clinic directors representing 49% of training programs responded. Wide variation amongst continuity clinics in size, structure and educational organization exist. Clinics below the 25th percentile of total clinic sessions would not meet RRC-IM requirements for total number of clinic sessions. Only two thirds of clinics provided a longitudinal mentor. Forty-three percent of directors reported their trainees felt stressed in the clinic environment and 25% of clinic directors felt overwhelmed.
The survey used self reported data and was not anonymous. A slight predominance of larger clinics and university based clinics responded. Data may not reflect changes to programs made since 2008.
This national survey demonstrates that the continuity clinic experience varies widely across IM programs, with many sites not yet meeting new ACGME requirements. The combination of disadvantaged and ill patients with inadequately resourced clinics, stressed residents, and clinic directors suggests that many sites need substantial reorganization and institutional commitment.New paradigms, encouraged by ACGME requirement changes such as increased separation of inpatient and outpatient duties are needed to improve the continuity clinic experience.
clinic; resident education; ACGME; primary care
This article describes how internal medicine residents at Vanderbilt University Medical Center learn to assess and improve care using the Institute of Medicine aims for improvement and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education core competencies combined in a tool called the health care matrix. The most important and popular use of the health care matrix has been with suboptimal care, in which care is not safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable, or patient centered.
The core competencies provide a means of defining why care was not safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable, or patient centered. The Institute of Medicine aims for improvement are also important because they are used to frame most publicly reported measures of quality. Few residents have an understanding of these public measures and how their futures will be affected by the growing trend toward quality report cards.
To help the residents understand the significance of public measures of quality, they learn to assess their patients as a “panel,” looking at the care they provide for patients with coronary artery disease and diabetes mellitus. Residents use the health care matrix to analyze 1 of their patients, and then as a group they select a health care matrix for their improvement project. The way the health care matrix is formatted and the sequencing of the core competencies allow for the analysis of the cells to lead to the final question “What was learned and what needs to be improved?” The residents are then taught the tools and methods of quality improvement and complete their project. Some of these projects have had a significant influence on external measures of quality for this organization. The article describes the 8-week course that residents complete, the use of the health care matrix, the analysis of the patient panel, and finally an example of a completed project in which they improve the timeliness of antibiotics administration to patients with pneumonia (a public measure of quality).
Objective: To determine the general status of sports medicine training in internal medicine residency programmes in the United States.
Methods: A cross sectional survey of the programme directors and chief residents of each of the 407 accredited internal medicine programmes listed in the 1999–2000 Graduate Medical Education Directory.
Results: The questionnaire was returned by 231 of 404 (57%) programme directors and 233 of 404 (58%) chief residents. A chief and director of the same programme (paired responses) replied from 144 of 404 (36%) programmes surveyed. A formal sports medicine curriculum was reported by 22.1% of programme directors. Programmes with a formal curriculum were 2.9 times more likely to offer any of the sports medicine educational experiences (p<0.0001; Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel). Programmes with block rotations were more likely to include all of the educational experiences surveyed than those without (p<0.002 for each; χ2 test). A total of 162 programmes included sports medicine as part of other rotations. Most programmes only included sports medicine as part of other rotations: 44.6% (103/231) of all programmes and 63.6% (103/162) of programmes with sports medicine as part of other rotations. Some 29.9% (69/231) of directors reported having an elective, and 3.9% (9/231) reported a required rotation. Almost a quarter (21.7%; 50/231) of directors reported that their residents received no clinical experience in sports medicine.
Conclusions: Little attention is given to the subject of sports medicine when internal medicine residency curricula are developed in the United States. Thus only a small percentage of American internal medicine residency programmes provide significant training in sports medicine.
The evidence supporting the effectiveness of educational games in graduate medical education is limited. Anecdotal reports suggest their popularity in that setting. The objective of this study was to explore the support for and the different aspects of use of educational games in family medicine and internal medicine residency programs in the United States.
We conducted a survey of family medicine and internal medicine residency program directors in the United States. The questionnaire asked the program directors whether they supported the use of educational games, their actual use of games, and the type of games being used and the purpose of that use.
Of 434 responding program directors (52% response rate), 92% were in support of the use of games as an educational strategy, and 80% reported already using them in their programs. Jeopardy like games were the most frequently used games (78%). The use of games was equally popular in family medicine and internal medicine residency programs and popularity was inversely associated with more than 75% of residents in the program being International Medical Graduates. The percentage of program directors who reported using educational games as teaching tools, review tools, and evaluation tools were 62%, 47%, and 4% respectively.
Given a widespread use of educational games in the training of medical residents, in spite of limited evidence for efficacy, further evaluation of the best approaches to education games should be explored.
Directors of postgraduate internal medicine programs face many problems in program design, particularly when numbers of house staff continue to decrease. This paper examines the training requirements of a resident in internal medicine and proposes a curriculum based on set rotations in the three key areas of training--subspecialty services, critical care and the clinical teaching unit. The distribution of time in these three areas and the balance of exposure to inpatients and outpatients are discussed in detail. This program design ensures exposure to all the key elements of internal medicine in 3 years and should prevent significant gaps in knowledge at the time of certification. The implications for "service" in major teaching hospitals is discussed. Hospital departments and administrators must confront the prospect of hospital units without house staff. Most important, program directors must resist sacrificing the pedagogic essentials of a training program for service requirements.
The complex competency labeled practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) incorporates core knowledge in evidence-based medicine (EBM). The purpose of this study was to operationally define a “PBLI-EBM” domain for assessing resident physician competence.
The authors used an iterative design process to first content analyze and map correspondences between ACGME and EBM literature sources. The project team, including content and measurement experts and residents/fellows, parsed, classified, and hierarchically organized embedded learning outcomes using a literature-supported cognitive taxonomy. A pool of 141 items was produced from the domain and assessment specifications. The PBLI-EBM domain and resulting items were content validated through formal reviews by a national panel of experts.
The final domain represents overlapping PBLI and EBM cognitive dimensions measurable through written, multiple-choice assessments. It is organized as 4 subdomains of clinical action: Therapy, Prognosis, Diagnosis, and Harm. Four broad cognitive skill branches (Ask, Acquire, Appraise, and Apply) are subsumed under each subdomain. Each skill branch is defined by enabling skills that specify the cognitive processes, content, and conditions pertinent to demonstrable competence. Most items passed content validity screening criteria and were prepared for test form assembly and administration.
The operational definition of PBLI-EBM competence is based on a rigorously developed and validated domain and item pool, and substantially expands conventional understandings of EBM. The domain, assessment specifications, and procedures outlined may be used to design written assessments to tap important cognitive dimensions of the overall PBLI competency, as given by ACGME. For more comprehensive coverage of the PBLI competency, such instruments need to be complemented with performance assessments.
In 2003, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education standardized and regulated work hours for physicians in training in the United States. In December 2008, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommended further reductions in duty hours to ensure safer conditions for patients and residents and fellows. Significantly, the IOM committee acknowledged that there are barriers to implementing its recommendations.
In the wake of the IOM proposals, we chose to survey a reference closer to home: residency program directors, faculty, and residents. Our survey allowed them the opportunity to express their opinions regarding the IOM proposals.
The majority of the faculty oppose the proposed IOM changes, arguing that there is no definite evidence to support the hypothesis that fewer work hours mean better outcomes in patient safety and education. First-year residents and residents who moonlight were more likely to experience stress and to support decreased work hours.
The thoughts and opinions of faculty and residents collected through this survey, in combination with evidence-based studies from trial implementation of these standards, will contribute real answers to the challenging questions on resident work hours.
The emergency department (ED) visit rate for older patients exceeds that of all age groups other than infants. The aging population will increase elder ED patient utilization to 35% to 60% of all visits. Older patients can have complex clinical presentations and be resource-intensive. Evidence indicates that emergency physicians fail to provide consistent high-quality care for elder ED patients, resulting in poor clinical outcomes.
The objective was to develop a consensus document, “Geriatric Competencies for Emergency Medicine Residents,” by identified experts. This is a minimum set of behaviorally based performance standards that all residents should be able to demonstrate by completion of their residency training.
This consensus-based process utilized an inductive, qualitative, multiphase method to determine the minimum geriatric competencies needed by emergency medicine (EM) residents. Assessments of face validity and reliability were used throughout the project.
In Phase I, participants (n = 363) identified 12 domains and 300 potential competencies. In Phase II, an expert panel (n = 24) clustered the Phase I responses, resulting in eight domains and 72 competencies. In Phase III, the expert panel reduced the competencies to 26. In Phase IV, analysis of face validity and reliability yielded a 100% consensus for eight domains and 26 competencies. The domains identified were atypical presentation of disease; trauma, including falls; cognitive and behavioral disorders; emergent intervention modifications; medication management; transitions of care; pain management and palliative care; and effect of comorbid conditions.
The Geriatric Competencies for EM Residents is a consensus document that can form the basis for EM residency curricula and assessment to meet the demands of our aging population.
geriatrics; emergency medicine residents; competency; consensus