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Fam Med. 2014 Jun;46(6):459-62.

A medical student leadership course led to teamwork, advocacy, and mindfulness.

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1
Sepulveda VA Ambulatory Care Center, North Hills, CA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

Many medical trainees seek work among underserved communities but may be unprepared to cope with the challenges. Relationship-centered qualities have been shown to promote physician resilience and prevent burnout. The UCLA-PRIME program aims to prepare medical students to work among vulnerable groups and begins with a 3-week leadership course. We describe this course and share lessons with those seeking to foster leadership, advocacy, and resiliency in our future physician workforce.

METHODS:

Twenty students participated in our curriculum that emphasized five competencies: leadership, advocacy, teamwork, mindfulness, and self-care. Course activities complemented the students' work as they developed a community outreach project. They assessed and reflected on their leadership, relationship, and team behaviors, were coached to improve these, learned mindfulness meditation, and participated in community forums. Our evaluation assessed course quality, project completion, leadership, mindfulness, and team relational coordination.

RESULTS:

Students were very satisfied with all aspects of the course. They designed a medical student elective addressing the health challenges of an incarcerated and formerly incarcerated population. While we found no change in leadership practices scores, students had high team relational coordination scores and improved mindfulness scores upon course completion.

DISCUSSION:

Our course to develop medical students as resilient leaders, team members, and advocates for medically underserved groups consisted of a community-based service project, coupled with a facilitated relationship-centered curriculum. It promoted qualities in students that characterize effective and resilient physician leaders; they were more mindful, related to each other effectively, and coordinated their activities well with one another.

PMID:
24911302
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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