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Med Teach. 2014 Jul;36(7):626-31. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2014.899689. Epub 2014 May 2.

Assessors for communication skills: SPs or healthcare professionals?

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1
International Medical University , Malaysia.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

The complexity of modern medicine creates more challenges for teaching and assessment of communication skills in undergraduate medical programme. This research was conducted to study the level of communication skills among undergraduate medical students and to determine the difference between simulated patients and clinical instructors' assessment of communication skills.

METHODS:

This comparative study was conducted for three months at the Clinical Skills and Simulation Centre of the International Medical University in Malaysia. The modified Calgary-Cambridge checklist was used to assess the communication skills of 50 first year and 50 second year medical students (five-minutes pre-recorded interview videos on the scenario of sore throat). These videos were reviewed and scored by simulated patients (SPs), communication skills instructors (CSIs) and non-communication skills instructors (non-CSIs).

RESULTS:

Better performance was observed among the undergraduate medical students, who had formal training in communication skills with a significant difference in overall scores detected among the first and second year medical students (pā€‰=ā€‰0.0008). A non-significant difference existed between the scores of SPs and CSIs for Year 1 (pā€‰=ā€‰0.151).

CONCLUSIONS:

The SPs could be trained and involved in assessment of communication skills. Formal training in communication skills is necessary in the undergraduate medical programme.

PMID:
24787534
DOI:
10.3109/0142159X.2014.899689
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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