Journal: Medical Teacher Author: Fuller L, Lawson M, Beattie J. Publication Date: Dec 2020
Description: Purpose

To compare the participation of rural Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (LIC) and rural Block Rotation (BR) students in surgical clinical activities.


Methods

Third-year medical students from Deakin University’s Rural Clinical Schools were invited to record their participation during clinical encounters with ten common surgical conditions, using a descriptive five-point progressive entrustment scale. Participation levels of LIC and BR students were compared for differences, according to clinical task and context.


Results

LIC students recorded greater active participation across all clinical tasks.

Highest levels of active participation occurred in General Practice, a setting only LIC students were exposed to at this course stage. BR students recorded the majority of their surgical encounters in the hospital inpatient setting, where their involvement was predominantly observational. Both groups recorded high levels of participation in the Emergency Department.


Conclusions

Active participation in clinical encounters with surgical patients was enhanced by participation in a LIC program and cannot be attributed to the rural context alone. Student participation is influenced by clinical context, presenting the opportunity to reconsider the design of clerkships to include models that facilitate active student participation. Further research is required to investigate the learner, supervisor and contextual factors influencing entrustment decisions within clerkships.
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