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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2009 Sep;57(9):1685-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2009.02399.x. Epub 2009 Aug 13.

Description and students' perceptions of a required geriatric clerkship in postacute rehabilitative care.

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  • 1Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center, North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System, Gainesville, Florida, USA. mbautista@aging.ufl.edu


This article describes medical students' evaluation of a geriatric clerkship in postacute rehabilitative care settings. This was a cross-sectional study of fourth-year medical students who completed a mandatory 2-week rotation at a postacute care facility. Students were provided with three instructional methods: Web-based interactive learning modules; small-group sessions with geriatric faculty; and Geriatric Interdisciplinary Care Summary (GICS), a grid that students used to formulate comprehensive interdisciplinary care plans for their own patients. After the rotation, students evaluated the overall clerkship, patient care activities, and usefulness of the three instructional methods using a 5-point Likert scale (1=poor to 5=excellent) and listed their area of future specialty. Of 156 students who completed the rotation, 117 (75%) completed the evaluation. Thirty (26%) chose specialties providing chronic disease management such as family, internal medicine, and psychiatry; 34 (29%) chose specialties providing primarily procedural services such as surgery, radiology, anesthesiology, pathology, and radiation oncology. Students rated the usefulness of the GICS as good to very good (mean+/-standard deviation 3.3+/-1.0). Similarly, they rated overall clerkship as good to excellent (3.8+/-1.0). Analysis of variance revealed no significant group difference in any of the responses from students with the overall clerkship (F(112, 4)=1.7, P=.20). Students rated the geriatric clerkship favorably and found the multimodal instruction to be useful. Even for students whose career choice was not primary care, geriatrics was a good model for interdisciplinary care training and could serve as a model for other disciplines.

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