Student voices transform Leicester's medical curriculum

Posted by ac555 at Mar 21, 2014 04:01 PM |
Medical students seek additional practical experience during degree in response to Francis Report
Student voices transform Leicester's medical curriculum

Medicine students with mannequin patient

An innovative shake-up of first and second year undergraduate medical education at Leicester’s Medical School has been the University’s response to the 2013 Francis Inquiry. Medical students have been pivotal in shaping the School’s new curriculum which aims to better prepare students for their clinical careers and will create more well-rounded doctors when they graduate.

The findings of the report, which investigated the failings in care at the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust between 2005-2009, have had significant implications for undergraduate medical education. Of the report’s 290 recommendations, 281 have been accepted by the Government and Medical Schools are now specifically required to work with care providers to ensure that students are able to feedback concerns about standards of care.

As a result of consultation with students as to how best to implement the report’s recommendations, from the start of the 2014 academic year, our first year students will now spend half-a-day a week as volunteer care assistants. During their second year, they will volunteer as assistant nurses on the wards; both opportunities will further improve their interactions with other healthcare professionals and patients.

In addition, students have also requested specific instruction on how to apologise to patients and additional teaching on the emotional impact of disease. Many students reported that arrogance amongst their peers has to be addressed and also felt that there should be clearer pathways for raising concerns about fellow students and doctors.

The University is committed to combining teaching and training with applied research to offer improved patient treatment and care. The new £42 million Centre for Medicine, set to open in autumn 2015, will further enable the University to put patient care at the core of the curriculum as the state-of-the-art facility will allow staff to harness cutting-edge technology to deliver teaching in innovative and ground breaking ways. A patient consortium is also being consulted to ensure students continue to put their patients first.