Assessing the Impact of a Geriatric Clinical Skills Day on Medical Students’ Attitudes Toward Geriatrics
Keywords:education, geriatrics, attitude, intervention
The aging population requires an improvement in physicians’ attitudes, knowledge, and skills, regardless of their specialty. This study aimed to identify attitude changes of University of Toronto pre-clerkship medical students towards geriatrics after participation in a Geriatric Clinical Skills Day (GCSD).
This was a before and after study. The GCSD consisted of one large and four small interactive, inter-professional geriatric medicine workshops facilitated by various health professionals. A questionnaire, including the validated UCLA Geriatrics Attitudes Scale, was administered to participating pre-clerkship medical students before and after the GCSD. A one-sample t-test and signed rank parametric test were used to determine attitude changes.
42.1% indicated an interest in Geriatric Medicine, 26.3% in Geriatric Psychiatry, and 63.2% in working with elderly patients. Both pre- and post-mean scores were greater than 3 (neutral), indicating a positive attitude before and after the intervention (p < .001). There was no significant difference in the change in mean total scores (signed rank test p ≥ .12, Student’s t-test p > .11).
The GCSD did not alter pre-clerkship students’ attitudes towards geriatrics. This study adds to geriatric medical education research and warrants further investigation in a larger, multi centred trial.
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