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Educ Health (Abingdon). 2019 May-Aug;32(2):95-98. doi: 10.4103/efh.EfH_111_18.

Developing an objective structured clinical examination in comprehensive geriatric assessment - A pilot study.

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Department of Older Person Medicine, Royal Bournemouth Hospital, Bournemouth, Devon, UK.
Department of Geriatric Medicine, Cardiff and Vale UHB, University Hospital Wales, Cardiff, Devon, UK.
Department of Elderly Care, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, Exeter, Devon, UK.
Department of Research, Royal College of Physicians, London, UK.
Institute for Ageing and Health, Newcastle University, Campus for Ageing and Vitality, Tyne, UK.



Acquiring medical competencies alone does not necessarily lead to the delivery of quality clinical care. Many UK training programs are soon to be based on the curricula of entrustable professional capabilities (EPCs). These are tasks carried out in practice requiring proficiency in several competencies for quality practice. Assessments to evaluate EPCs for independent practice are needed. Comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) is an EPC in geriatric medicine. We describe the development of an assessment of CGA as an example of examining EPCs.


A CGA station was introduced in the Diploma in Geriatric Medicine clinical examination. Candidates rotate through four stations: three single competency-based stations (history, communication/ethics and physical examination) and an EPC-based station in CGA.


One hundred and seventy-eight (female: 96 [53.9%]) candidates took it. There was a weak but significantly positive correlation between the score at CGA and the total score in the other stations (r = 0.46; P < 0.001). Most candidates passing the station passed the examination. Correlation with other stations similarly showed weak significant correlations (Station 1: r = 0.38; P < 0.001, Station 3: r = 0.28; P < 0.001, and Station 4: r = 0.37; P < 0.001). There was 61.4% (kappa: 0.61; P = 0.000) agreement between examiners whether a candidate passed or failed. Agreement was higher for the other stations, i.e. Station 1 (kappa: 0.85; P < 0.001), Station 3 (kappa: 0.72; P < 0.001), and Station 4 (kappa: 0.85; P < 0.001).


Performance on the station correlated positively with overall performance, suggesting that it has discriminatory value in differentiating candidates with varying ability and the more able candidates pass the examination.


Comprehensive geriatric assessment; development; entrustable professional capabilities; objective structured clinical examination; summative assessment

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