Electronic decision support is commonplace in medical practice. However, its adoption at the point-of-care is dependent on a range of organisational, patient and clinician-related factors. In particular, level of clinical experience is an important driver of electronic decision support uptake. Our objective was to examine the way in which Australian doctors at different stages of medical training use a web-based oncology system (http://www.eviq.org.au).
We used logfiles to examine the characteristics of eviQ registrants (2009–2012) and patterns of eviQ use in 2012, according to level of medical training. We also used a web-based survey to evaluate the way doctors at different levels of medical training use the online system and to elicit perceptions of the system’s utility in oncology care.
Our study cohort comprised 2,549 eviQ registrants who were hospital-based medical doctors across all levels of training. 65% of the cohort used eviQ in 2012, with 25% of interns/residents, 61% of advanced oncology trainees and 47% of speciality-qualified oncologists accessing eviQ in the last 3 months of 2012. The cohort accounted for 445,492 webhits in 2012. On average, advanced trainees used eviQ up to five-times more than other doctors (42.6 webhits/month compared to 22.8 for specialty-qualified doctors and 7.4 webhits/month for interns/residents). Of the 52 survey respondents, 89% accessed eviQ’s chemotherapy protocols on a daily or weekly basis in the month prior to the survey. 79% of respondents used eviQ at least weekly to initiate therapy and to support monitoring (29%), altering (35%) or ceasing therapy (19%). Consistent with the logfile analysis, advanced oncology trainees report more frequent eviQ use than doctors at other stages of medical training.
The majority of the Australian oncology workforce are registered on eviQ. The frequency of use directly mirrors the clinical role of doctors and attitudes about the utility of eviQ in decision-making. Evaluations of this kind generate important data for system developers and medical educators to drive improvements in electronic decision support to better meet the needs of clinicians. This end-user focus will optimise the uptake of systems which will translate into improvements in processes of care and patient outcomes.
Clinical decision support systems; Evidence-based practice; Medical education; Cancer chemotherapy protocols; Health personnel; ‘Medical staff; Hospital’
To investigate factors which influenced UK-trained doctors to emigrate to New Zealand and factors which might encourage them to return.
Cross-sectional postal and Internet questionnaire survey.
Participants in New Zealand; investigators in UK.
UK-trained doctors from 10 graduation-year cohorts who were registered with the New Zealand Medical Council in 2009.
Main outcome measures
Reasons for emigration; job satisfaction; satisfaction with leisure time; intentions to stay in New Zealand; changes to the UK NHS which might increase the likelihood of return.
Of 38,821 UK-trained doctors in the cohorts, 535 (1.4%) were registered to practise in New Zealand. We traced 419, of whom 282 (67%) replied to our questionnaire. Only 30% had originally intended to emigrate permanently, but 89% now intended to stay. Sixty-nine percent had moved to take up a medical job. Seventy percent gave additional reasons for relocating to New Zealand including better lifestyle, to be with family, travel/working holiday, or disillusionment with the NHS. Respondents' mean job satisfaction score was 8.1 (95% CI 7.9–8.2) on a scale from 1 (lowest satisfaction) to 10 (highest), compared with 7.1 (7.1–7.2) for contemporaries in the UK NHS. Scored similarly, mean satisfaction with the time available for leisure was 7.8 (7.6–8.0) for the doctors in New Zealand, compared with 5.7 (5.6–5.7) for the NHS doctors. Although few respondents wanted to return to the UK, some stated that the likelihood of doctors' returning would be increased by changes to NHS working conditions and by administrative changes to ease the process.
Emigrant doctors in New Zealand had higher job satisfaction than their UK-based contemporaries, and few wanted to return. The predominant reason for staying in New Zealand was a preference for the lifestyle there.
Methods: A telephone questionnaire of specialist registrars (SpRs) (or equivalent, for example, staff grade) in six core specialties was performed in all the 11 acute hospitals in the Wessex region on the same evening. This group was selected to represent a sample of the most senior medical staff "on site" at each hospital.
Results: 56 of 64 (87.5%) SpRs participated. Nine of the 56 (16%) SpRs questioned had previously been involved in a major incident, and 18 (32%) had experienced some form of major incident training exercise. Subgroup analysis of the specialties showed that although there were no significant differences in numbers of training experiences between specialties, only one of nine (11%) orthopaedic SpRs had ever been involved in a training exercise. Twenty five of the 56 (45%) SpRs felt that they were confident of their role in the event of an incident.
Conclusion: Most middle grade staff in Wessex were not confident of their role in the event of a major incident. Most SpRs questioned had never attended a major incident training exercise.
To assess the confidence, practices and perceived training needs in diabetes care of post-graduate trainee doctors in the UK.
An anonymised postal questionnaire using a validated 'Confidence Rating' (CR) scale was applied to aspects of diabetes care and administered to junior doctors from three UK hospitals. The frequency of aspects of day-to-day practice was assessed using a five-point scale with narrative description in combination with numeric values. Respondents had a choice of 'always' (100%), 'almost always' (80–99%), 'often' (50–79%), 'not very often' (20–49%) and 'rarely' (less than 20%). Yes/No questions were used to assess perception of further training requirements. Additional 'free-text' comments were also sought.
82 doctors completed the survey. The mean number of years since medical qualification was 3 years and 4 months, (range: 4 months to 14 years and 1 month). Only 11 of the respondents had undergone specific diabetes training since qualification.
4(5%) reported 'not confident' (CR1), 30 (37%) 'satisfactory but lacked confidence' (CR2), 25 (30%) felt 'confident in some cases' (CR3) and 23 (28%) doctors felt fully confident (CR4) in diagnosing diabetes. 12 (15%) doctors would always, 24 (29%) almost always, 20 (24%) often, 22 (27%) not very often and 4 (5%) rarely take the initiative to optimise gcaemic control. 5 (6%) reported training in diagnosis of diabetes was adequate while 59 (72%) would welcome more training. Reported confidence was better in managing diabetes emergencies, with 4 (5%) not confident in managing hypoglycaemia, 10 (12%) lacking confidence, 22 (27%) confident in some cases and 45 (55%) fully confident in almost all cases. Managing diabetic ketoacidosis, 5 (6%) doctors did not feel confident, 16 (20%) lacked confidence, 20 (24%) confident in some cases, and 40 (50%) felt fully confident in almost all cases.
There is a lack of confidence in managing aspects of diabetes care, including the management of diabetes emergencies, amongst postgraduate trainee doctors with a perceived need for more training. This may have considerable significance and further research is required to identify the causes of deficiencies identified in this study.
The General Medical Council expects UK medical graduates to gain some statistical knowledge during their undergraduate education; but provides no specific guidance as to amount, content or teaching method. Published work on statistics teaching for medical undergraduates has been dominated by medical statisticians, with little input from the doctors who will actually be using this knowledge and these skills after graduation. Furthermore, doctor's statistical training needs may have changed due to advances in information technology and the increasing importance of evidence-based medicine. Thus there exists a need to investigate the views of practising medical doctors as to the statistical training required for undergraduate medical students, based on their own use of these skills in daily practice.
A questionnaire was designed to investigate doctors' views about undergraduate training in statistics and the need for these skills in daily practice, with a view to informing future teaching. The questionnaire was emailed to all clinicians with a link to the University of East Anglia Medical School. Open ended questions were included to elicit doctors' opinions about both their own undergraduate training in statistics and recommendations for the training of current medical students. Content analysis was performed by two of the authors to systematically categorise and describe all the responses provided by participants.
130 doctors responded, including both hospital consultants and general practitioners. The findings indicated that most had not recognised the value of their undergraduate teaching in statistics and probability at the time, but had subsequently found the skills relevant to their career. Suggestions for improving undergraduate teaching in these areas included referring to actual research and ensuring relevance to, and integration with, clinical practice.
Grounding the teaching of statistics in the context of real research studies and including examples of typical clinical work may better prepare medical students for their subsequent career.
Objectives To report on the country of training and ethnicity of consultants in different specialties in the NHS, on trends in intake to UK medical schools by ethnicity, and on the specialty choices made by UK medical graduates in different ethnic groups.
Design Analysis of official databases of consultants and of students accepted to study medicine; survey data about career choices made by newly qualified doctors.
Setting and subjects England and Wales (consultants), United Kingdom (students and newly qualified doctors).
Results Of consultants appointed before 1992, 15% had trained abroad; of those appointed in 1992-2001, 24% had trained abroad. The percentage of consultants who had trained abroad and were non-white was significantly high, compared with their overall percentage among consultants, in geriatric medicine, genitourinary medicine, paediatrics, old age psychiatry, and learning disability. UK trained non-white doctors had specialty destinations similar to those of UK trained white doctors. The percentage of UK medical graduates who are non-white has increased substantially from about 2% in 1974 and will approach 30% by 2005. White men now comprise little more than a quarter of all UK medical students. White and non-white UK graduates make similar choices of specialty.
Conclusions Specialist medical practice in the NHS has been heavily dependent on doctors who have trained abroad, particularly in specialties where posts have been hard to fill. By contrast, UK trained doctors from ethnic minorities are not over-represented in the less popular specialties. Ethnic minorities are well represented in UK medical school intakes; and white men, but not white women, are now substantially under-represented.
The knowledge of medical ethics is essential for health care practitioners worldwide. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the knowledge of medical doctors in a tertiary care hospital in Nigeria in the area of medical ethics.
Materials and Methods:
A cross-sectional questionnaire-based study involving 250 medical doctors of different levels was carried out. The questionnaire, apart from the bio-data, also sought information on undergraduate and postgraduate training in medical ethics, knowledge about the principles of biomedical ethics and the ethical dilemmas encountered in daily medical practice.
One hundred and ninety (190) respondents returned the filled questionnaire representing a response rate of 76%. One hundred and fifty-two respondents (80%) have had some sort of medical ethics education during their undergraduate level in the medical education. The median duration of formal training or exposure to medical ethics education was 3.00 hours (range: 0-15). One hundred and twenty-nine respondents have read at least once the code of medical ethics of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria while 127 (66.8%) have some general knowledge of the principles of biomedical ethics. The breakdown of the identified ethical dilemmas shows that discharge against medical advice was the most identified by the respondents (69.3%) followed by religious/cultural issues (56.6%) while confidentiality was recognized by 53.4%.
The knowledge of medical ethics by Nigerian medical doctors is grossly inadequate. There is an urgent need for enhancement of the teaching of the discipline at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels in Nigeria.
Biomedical ethics; developing countries; ethical dilemma; medical education; physicians
In the UK and many other countries, many specialties have had longstanding problems with recruitment and have increasingly relied on international medical graduates to fill junior and senior posts. We aimed to determine what specialties were the most popular and desirable among candidates for training posts, and whether this differed by country of undergraduate training.
We conducted a database analysis of applications to Modernising Medical Careers for all training posts in England in 2008. Total number of applications (as an index of popularity) and applications per vacancy (as an index of desirability) were analysed for ten different specialties. We tested whether mean consultant incomes correlated with specialty choice.
In, 2008, there were 80,949 applications for specialty training in England, of which 31,434 were UK graduates (39%). Among UK medical graduates, psychiatry was the sixth most popular specialty (999 applicants) out of 10 specialty groups, while it was fourth for international graduates (5,953 applicants). Among UK graduates, surgery (9.4 applicants per vacancy) and radiology (8.0) had the highest number of applicants per vacancy and paediatrics (1.2) and psychiatry (1.1) the lowest. Among international medical graduates, psychiatry had the fourth highest number of applicants per place (6.3). Specialty popularity for UK graduates was correlated with predicted income (p = 0.006).
Based on the number of applicants per place, there was some consistency in the most popular specialties for both UK and international medical graduates, but there were differences in the popularity of psychiatry. With anticipated decreases in the number of new international medical graduates training in the UK, university departments and professional associations may need to review strategies to attract more UK medical graduates into certain specialties, particularly psychiatry and paediatrics.
With the “ASIA-LINK” program, the European Community has supported the development and implementation of a curriculum of postgraduate psychosomatic training for medical doctors in China, Vietnam and Laos. Currently, these three countries are undergoing great social, economic and cultural changes. The associated psychosocial stress has led to increases in psychological and psychosomatic problems, as well as disorders for which no adequate medical or psychological care is available, even in cities. Health care in these three countries is characterized by the coexistence of Western medicine and traditional medicine. Psychological and psychosomatic disorders and problems are insufficiently recognized and treated, and there is a need for biopsychosocially orientated medical care. Little is known about the transferability of Western-oriented psychosomatic training programs in the Southeast Asian cultural context.
The curriculum was developed and implemented in three steps: 1) an experimental phase to build a future teacher group; 2) a joint training program for future teachers and German teachers; and 3) training by Asian trainers that was supervised by German teachers. The didactic elements included live patient interviews, lectures, communication skills training and Balint groups. The training was evaluated using questionnaires for the participants and interviews of the German teachers and the future teachers.
Regional training centers were formed in China (Shanghai), Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City and Hue) and Laos (Vientiane). A total of 200 physicians completed the training, and 30 physicians acquired the status of future teacher. The acceptance of the training was high, and feelings of competence increased during the courses. The interactive training methods were greatly appreciated, with the skills training and self-experience ranked as the most important topics. Adaptations to the cultural background of the participants were necessary for the topics of “breaking bad news,” the handling of negative emotions, discontinuities in participation, the hierarchical doctor-patient relationship, culture-specific syndromes and language barriers. In addition to practical skills for daily clinical practice, the participants wanted to learn more about didactic teaching methods. Half a year after the completion of the training program, the participants stated that the program had a great impact on their daily medical practice.
The training in psychosomatic medicine for postgraduate medical doctors resulted in a positive response and is an important step in addressing the barriers in providing psychosomatic primary care. The transferability of western concepts should be tested locally, and adaptations should be undertaken where necessary. The revised curriculum forms the basis of training in psychosomatic medicine and psychotherapy for medical students and postgraduate doctors in China, Vietnam and Laos.
Psychosomatic medicine; Curriculum; Teaching of teachers; China; Vietnam; Laos
Objective To determine whether the ethnicity of UK trained doctors and medical students is related to their academic performance.
Design Systematic review and meta-analysis.
Data sources Online databases PubMed, Scopus, and ERIC; Google and Google Scholar; personal knowledge; backwards and forwards citations; specific searches of medical education journals and medical education conference abstracts.
Study selection The included quantitative reports measured the performance of medical students or UK trained doctors from different ethnic groups in undergraduate or postgraduate assessments. Exclusions were non-UK assessments, only non-UK trained candidates, only self reported assessment data, only dropouts or another non-academic variable, obvious sampling bias, or insufficient details of ethnicity or outcomes.
Results 23 reports comparing the academic performance of medical students and doctors from different ethnic groups were included. Meta-analyses of effects from 22 reports (n=23 742) indicated candidates of “non-white” ethnicity underperformed compared with white candidates (Cohen’s d=−0.42, 95% confidence interval −0.50 to −0.34; P<0.001). Effects in the same direction and of similar magnitude were found in meta-analyses of undergraduate assessments only, postgraduate assessments only, machine marked written assessments only, practical clinical assessments only, assessments with pass/fail outcomes only, assessments with continuous outcomes only, and in a meta-analysis of white v Asian candidates only. Heterogeneity was present in all meta-analyses.
Conclusion Ethnic differences in academic performance are widespread across different medical schools, different types of exam, and in undergraduates and postgraduates. They have persisted for many years and cannot be dismissed as atypical or local problems. We need to recognise this as an issue that probably affects all of UK medical and higher education. More detailed information to track the problem as well as further research into its causes is required. Such actions are necessary to ensure a fair and just method of training and of assessing current and future doctors.
International medical graduates (IMGs) are a remarkably successful professional group in the United Kingdom making up to 30% of the NHS work force. Their very success and media publicity about general practice and consultant shortages, has led to a large influx of inexperienced doctors seeking training opportunities in competitive specialties. In 2003 a record 15 549 doctors joined the medical register of which 9336 doctors were non-European Economic Area citizens. The number of candidates sitting PLAB part 1 and part 2 in 2003 rose by 267% and 283% respectively compared with 2001. Changes to Department of Health, Home Office, and deanery regulations with expansion of medical schools, implementation of European Working Time Directive, Modernising Medical Careers, and the future role of the Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board, will have an important impact on IMGs' training. Dissemination of realistic information about postgraduate training opportunities is important as the NHS for some time will continue to rely on IMGs.
Ethics training has become a core component of medical student and resident education. Curricula have been developed without the benefit of data regarding the views of physicians-in-training on the need for ethics instruction that focuses on practical issues and professional development topics.
A written survey was sent to all medical students and PGY1-3 residents at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. The survey consisted of eight demographic questions and 124 content questions in 10 domains. Responses to a set of 24 items related to ethically important dilemmas, which may occur in the training period and subsequent professional practice, are reported. Items were each rated on a 9-point scale addressing the level of educational attention needed compared to the amount currently provided.
Survey respondents included 200 medical students (65% response) and 136 residents (58% response). Trainees, regardless of level of training or clinical discipline, perceived a need for more academic attention directed at practical ethical and professional dilemmas present during training and the practice of medicine. Women expressed a desire for more education directed at both training-based and practice-based ethical dilemmas when compared to men. A simple progression of interest in ethics topics related to level of medical training was not found. Residents in diverse clinical specialties differed in, perceived ethics educational needs. Psychiatry residents reported a need for enhanced education directed toward training stage ethics problems.
This study documents the importance placed on ethics education directed at practical real-world dilemmas and ethically important professional developmental issues by physicians-in-training. Academic medicine may be better able to fulfill its responsibilities in teaching ethics and professionalism and in serving its trainees by paying greater attention to these topics in undergraduate and graduate medical curricula.
To investigate the geographical mobility of UK-trained doctors.
Cohort studies conducted by postal questionnaires.
A total 31,353 UK-trained doctors in 11 cohorts defined by year of qualification, from 1974 to 2008.
Main outcome measures
Location of family home prior to medical school, location of medical school, region of first training post, region of first career post. Analysis for the UK divided into 17 standard geographical regions.
The response rate was 81.2% (31,353/45,061; denominators, below, depended on how far the doctors’ careers had progressed). Of all respondents, 36% (11,381/31,353) attended a medical school in their home region and 48% (10,370/21,740) undertook specialty training in the same region as their medical school.
Of respondents who had reached the grade of consultant or principal in general practice in the UK, 34% (4169/12,119) settled in the same region as their home before entering medical school. Of those in the UK, 70% (7643/10,887) held their first career post in the same region as either their home before medical school, or their medical school or their location of training. For 18% (1938/10,887), all four locations – family home, medical school, place of training, place of first career post – were within the same region. A higher percentage of doctors from the more recent than from the older cohorts settled in the region of their family home.
Many doctors do not change geographical region in their successive career moves, and recent cohorts appear less inclined to do so.
Thirty six young doctors who as medical students had been randomly allocated to either video feedback training or conventional teaching in interviewing skills during a psychiatry clerkship were reassessed five years later. Each doctor interviewed one patient with a psychiatric illness and two with a physical illness. Each interview was rated independently. Both groups had improved since the fourth year clerkship, but those given feedback training had maintained their superiority in the skills associated with accurate diagnosis. This superiority was as evident in their interviews with physically ill patients as it was with psychiatric patients. Both groups, however, still used "closed" questions and were more reluctant to cover psychosocial problems in physically ill patients. Those trained conventionally were clinically inadequate in both these aspects and in clarifying their patients' statements. Given these lasting benefits, all medical students should have feedback training in interviewing skills.
Objective: Simulations of doctor-patient interactions have become a popular method for the training of medical skills, primarily communication skills. A new questionnaire for the measurement of students’ satisfaction with medical courses using this technique is presented, the Student Evaluation Scale for Medical Courses with Simulations of the Doctor-Patient Interaction (SES-Sim).
Method: A set of items focusing on the course quality and the core elements of simulations was created and presented to 220 medical students who had been trained with this method.
Results: Based on factor-analyses 18 items were selected for the final version of the scale, which represent five dimensions: learning success, actors, premises, tutors and students. The five dimensions are all significantly correlated with a 1-item-measure of the general satisfaction with the course.
Conclusion: The SES-Sim enables tutors to assess in an economic way whether the course has met the students’ needs and what can be done better.
Medical skills; communication; doctor-patient interaction; simulation; student evaluation
To investigate the experiences of doctors who become chief executives of NHS organizations, with the aim of understanding their career paths and the facilitators and barriers encountered along the way.
Twenty-two medical chief executives were identified and of these 20 were interviewed. In addition two former medical chief executives were interviewed. Information was collected about the age at which they became chief executives, the number of chief executive posts held, the training they received, and the opportunities, challenges and risks they experienced.
All NHS organizations in the United Kingdom in 2009.
The age of medical chief executives on first appointment ranged from 36 to 64 years, the average being 48 years. The majority of those interviewed were either in their first chief executive post or had stepped down having held only one such post. The training and development accessed en route to becoming chief executives was highly variable. Interviewees were positive about the opportunity to bring about organizational and service improvement on a bigger scale than is possible in clinical work. At the same time, they emphasized the insecurities associated with being a chief executive. Doctors who become chief executives experience a change in their professional identity and the role of leaders occupying hybrid positions is not well recognized.
Doctors who become chief executives are self-styled ‘keen amateurs’ and there is a need to provide more structured support to enable them to become skilled professionals. The new faculty of medical leadership and management could have an important role in this process.
Deaf and hard-of-hearing (DHoH) individuals are underrepresented among physicians and physicians-in-training, yet this group is frequently overlooked in the diversity efforts of many medical training programs. The inclusion of DHoH individuals, with their diverse backgrounds, experiences, and struggles contributes to medical education and health care systems in a variety of ways, including: (1) a richer medical education experience for students and faculty resulting in greater disability awareness and knowledge about how to interact with and care for DHoH individuals and their families; (2) the provision of empathetic care desired by many patients and their families, including individuals who have a disability or chronic condition; and (3) the promotion of a more supportive and accessible professional environment for physicians, including older physicians in practice and as educators, who are experiencing age-associated decreased hearing acuity or other acquired disabilities.
Maternity leave and part-time training should facilitate the integration of the family and professional lives of young women doctors - whom the NHS cannot afford to lose as their numbers rise to half the number of the graduates of UK medical schools. Women doctors' planned professional activity is high, but to what extent do the maternity leave and part-time training arrangements assist them in fulfilling their plans? One hundred and forty-five young women doctors reported their experiences of and views on maternity leave and part-time training. Most had children between 6 and 10 years after qualification, to fit with career development. Seventy-one per cent of the confinements had qualified for maternity leave and pay, but there were complaints about the working of the regulations, particularly in relation to junior hospital doctors' short contracts. When asked to comment about part-time training, most (77%) expressed themselves as broadly in favour - only three actively opposing it. It was perceived as difficult to organize by 20% of respondents, as difficult to undertake by 29%, and as being of low status by 15%. This study concludes that the arrangements for maternity leave need to be improved and that the availability and status of part-time training need enhancing - especially to encourage women doctors to enter careers in hospital medicine.
Junior doctors' hours are one of the most controversial topics under debate in the health service today. We undertook a detailed postal questionnaire of hospital doctors in training within a major teaching unit in order to assess the awareness and perceived implications of the incipient changes and to elucidate how it was felt these changes would affect both the doctors and patients. The questionnaire focused specifically on the effect of the changes on quality and continuity of patient care, junior training and socio-economic factors relating to the medical staff. The questionnaire was entirely anonymous and carried only the first author name but provision was made to determine current grade, specialty, age, sex and career plans of the respondents. Importantly, space was included at the end for pertinent comments. All junior staff in training in all specialties in the Cardiff area were circulated. Three hundred and twenty-six questionnaires were sent out and 202 were returned of which 192 were properly completed (59%). Almost everyone was au fait with the proposed changes. There was a surprisingly high level of support for changes among non-surgical trainees, and half felt that quality of care would improve, though the more senior the trainee, the less enthusiastic they were in all aspects. Many felt that far too little consultation with junior staff had taken place and there was generalized criticism of general practitioner trainees by their specializing counterparts, partly because of a perceived lack of commitment and partly because of blame of this group for the inception of the changes.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
This paper addresses the problem of wastage of the qualified labor force, which takes place both during the education process and when trained personnel try to find jobs in the local market.
Secondary sources were used, mainly the Statistical yearbooks of the National Association of Universities and Higher Education Institutions (ANUIES in Spanish). Also, the 2000 Population Census was used to estimate the different sources of labor market wastage. The formulas were modified to estimate educational and labor wastage rates.
Out of every 1000 students who started a medical training in 1996, over 20% were not able to finish the training by 2000. Furthermore, out of every 1000 graduates, 31% were not able to find a remunerated position in the labor market that would enable them to put into practice the abilities and capacities obtained at school. Important differences can be observed between generalists and specialists, as well as between men and women. In the case of specialists and men, lower wastage rates can be observed as compared to the wastage rates of generalists and women. A large percentage of women dedicate themselves exclusively to household duties, which in labor terms represents a wastage of their capacity to participate in the production of formal health services.
Women are becoming a majority in most medical schools, yet their participation in the labor market does not reflect the same trend. Among men, policies should be formulated to incorporate doctors in the specific health field for which they were trained. Regarding women, specific policies should target those who are dedicated full-time to household activities in order to create the possibility of having them occupy a remunerated job if they are willing to do so. Reducing wastage at both the educational and labor levels should improve the capacity of social investment, thereby increasing the capacity of the health system as a whole to provide services, particularly to those populations who are most in need.
To ascertain the views of senior house officers and registrars on the educational and training component of their posts, a questionnaire was sent to all full-time doctors working in training posts in general and/or geriatric medicine at three district general and three teaching hospitals. Completed questionnaires were received from 64 (61%) of 105 doctors who were contacted. Most had a careers counsellor or tutor, although less than two-thirds thought they had benefited from this arrangement. The majority of doctors attended at least two medical tutorials or meetings per week; most wanted to attend more but were unable to because of other work commitments. Supervision by more senior staff on the ward was deemed by most to be satisfactory, but less so in out-patient clinics. Overall, one-third of doctors thought that training was inadequate and three-quarters wanted a greater amount of formal education. The majority of junior doctors' time was spent on routine work and most considered :training' constituted less than 10% of their working time. Doctors in training require more sessions designated as educational, with protected time to attend these.
The transition from medical student to junior doctor in postgraduate training is a critical stage in career progression. We report junior doctors' views about the extent to which their medical school prepared them for their work in clinical practice.
Postal questionnaires were used to survey the medical graduates of 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2005, from all UK medical schools, one year after graduation, and graduates of 2000, 2002 and 2005 three years after graduation. Summary statistics, chi-squared tests, and binary logistic regression were used to analyse the results. The main outcome measure was the level of agreement that medical school had prepared the responder well for work.
Response rate was 63.7% (11610/18216) in year one and 60.2% (8427/13997) in year three. One year after graduation, 36.3% (95% CI: 34.6, 38.0) of 1999/2000 graduates, 50.3% (48.5, 52.2) of 2002 graduates, and 58.2% (56.5, 59.9) of 2005 graduates agreed their medical school had prepared them well. Conversely, in year three agreement fell from 48.9% (47.1, 50.7) to 38.0% (36.0, 40.0) to 28.0% (26.2, 29.7). Combining cohorts at year one, percentages who agreed that they had been well prepared ranged from 82% (95% CI: 79-87) at the medical school with the highest level of agreement to 30% (25-35) at the lowest. At year three the range was 70% to 27%. Ethnicity and sex were partial predictors of doctors' level of agreement; following adjustment for them, substantial differences between schools remained. In years one and three, 30% and 34% of doctors specified that feeling unprepared had been a serious or medium-sized problem for them (only 3% in each year regarded it as serious).
The vast knowledge base of clinical practice makes full preparation impossible. Our statement about feeling prepared is simple yet discriminating and identified some substantial differences between medical schools. Medical schools need feedback from graduates about elements of training that could be improved.
Recent changes in postgraduate medical training in the UK collectively organized under the auspices of Modernising Medical Careers (MMC) have created new labels for junior doctors in training. It would appear that many nurses and other health workers do not understand the new terminology. We aimed to investigate the knowledge of nursing staff about new junior doctor titles in a district general hospital. As far as we are aware, this is the first survey to determine the views and knowledge of the new terms among staff working in the NHS.
District general hospital, West Midlands, UK.
Fifty-five randomly selected staff nurses working in the surgical directorate.
Main outcome measure
Questions were asked about their views and knowledge of the current nomenclature. To objectively assess knowledge of the new titles respondents were asked to match equivalent positions with those based on the old system.
Only 22% (n = 12) of respondents felt that they fully understand current terms in usage. Seventy-six percent (n = 42) felt that it was ‘very important’ that titles accurately convey role and seniority of the doctor. The most common titles correctly matched were FY1 and House Officer (n = 45, 81%) and FY2 and First Year Senior House Officer (n = 35, 64%). Only 9% (n = 5) of staff nurses correctly matched ST3 to Junior Registrar and 13% (n = 7) correctly matched ST7 to Senior Registrar. Ward-based staff nurses demonstrated greater familiarity with titles when compared to nurses who work mainly in the outpatient clinic and theatre setting (p = 0.017). We did not identify a statistically significant association with demographic characteristics (age, gender, experience) and knowledge of the new terms (p > 0.05). Approximately 98% (n = 54) of the staff surveyed felt that terms are confusing to nurses and need to be simplified.
Our survey revealed that nursing staff lacked knowledge of the current terminology to describe doctors in training. This may have implications for staff expectations regarding specific role of junior doctor in terms of clinical decision-making, working relationships and communication between team members, and ultimately patient care.
To explore the experience of non-UK-qualified doctors in working within the regulatory framework of the General Medical Council (GMC) document Good Medical Practice.
Individual interviews and focus groups.
Non-UK-qualified doctors who had registered with the GMC between 1 April 2006 and 31 March 2008, doctors attending training/induction programmes for non-UK-qualified doctors, and key informants involved in training and support for non-UK-qualified doctors.
Main outcome measures
Themes identified from analysis of interview and focus group transcripts.
Information and support for non-UK qualified doctors who apply to register to work in the UK has little reference to the ethical and professional standards required of doctors working in the UK. Recognition of the ethical, legal and cultural context of UK healthcare occurs once doctors are working in practice. Non-UK qualified doctors reported clear differences in the ethical and legal framework for practising medicine between the UK and their country of qualification, particularly in the model of the doctor–patient relationship. The degree of support for non-UK-qualified doctors in dealing with ethical concerns is related to the type of post they work in. European doctors describe similar difficulties with working in an unfamiliar regulatory framework to their non-European colleagues.
Non-UK-qualified doctors experience a number of difficulties related to practising within a different ethical and professional regulatory framework. Provision of information and educational resources before registration, together with in-practice support would help to develop a more effective understanding of GMP and its implications for practice in the UK.
Visit preparation interventions help patients prepare to meet with a medical provider. Systematic reviews have found some positive effects, but there are no reports describing implementation experiences. Consultation Planning (CP) is a visit preparation technique in which a trained coach or facilitator elicits and documents patient questions for an upcoming medical appointment. We integrated CP into a university breast cancer clinic beginning in 1998. Representatives of other organizations expressed interest in CP, so we invited them to training workshops in 2000, 2001, and 2002.
In order to learn from experience and generate hypotheses, we asked: 1) How many trainees implemented CP? 2) What facilitated implementation? 3) How have trainees, patients, physicians, and administrative leaders of implementing organizations reacted to CP? 4) What were the barriers to implementation?
We attempted to contact 32 trainees and scheduled follow-up, semi-structured, audio-recorded telephone interviews with 18. We analyzed quantitative data by tabulating frequencies and qualitative data by coding transcripts and identifying themes.
Trainees came from two different types of organizations, clinics (which provide medical care) versus resource centers (which provide patient support services but not medical care). We found that: 1) Fourteen of 21 respondents, from five of eight resource centers, implemented CP. Four of the five implementing resource centers were rural. 2) Implementers identified the championing of CP by an internal staff member as a critical success factor. 3) Implementers reported that modified CP has been productive. 4) Four respondents, from two resource centers and two clinics, did not implement CP, reporting resource limitations or conflicting priorities as the critical barriers.
CP training workshops have been associated with subsequent CP implementations at resource centers but not clinics. We hypothesize that CP workshops combined with an internal champion and adequate program resources may be sufficient for some patient support organizations to implement CP.