A Novel Blended Curriculum for Communication of Informed Consent With Surgical Interns

A Novel Blended Curriculum for Communication of Informed Consent With Surgical Interns
Tiffany N. Anderson, Aboubacar Kaba, Eniola Gros, Ingrid S. Schmiederer, Robert Shi, Lauren R. Aalami, Dana T. Lin, James N. Lau
Journal of Graduate Medical Education, June 2021; 13(3) pp 411–416
Abstract
Background
Interns often conduct procedural informed consent discussions (ICDs), identified as a core entrustable professional activity. Deficiencies in the training process for ICDs span across specialties.
Objective
We provide evidence for a curriculum and assessment designed to standardize the training process and ensure ICD competency in surgical interns.
Methods
In March 2019, PowerPoint educational materials were emailed to one academic institution’s new surgical interns, who in June participated in an onsite 1-hour role-play “hot seat” group activity (GA) with an untrained simulated patient, and in October completed a single trained simulated patient (real-time raters) verification of proficiency (VOP) assessment. Curriculum evaluation was measured through intern pre-/post-confidence (5-point scale), and the VOP’s Cronbach’s alpha and test-retest were examined. Data were analyzed with descriptive statistics, paired t tests, and 2-way random effects models.
Results
Of 44 new interns, 40 (91%) participated in the remote teaching and live GA and were assessed by the VOP. Pre-/post-GA confidence increased a mean difference of 1.3 (SD = 0.63, P < .001). The VOP’s Cronbach’s alpha was 0.88 and test-retest was 0.84 (95% CI 0.67–0.93, P < .001), with a 95% pass rate. The 2 first-time fail students required remediation. Time commitment included 1 hour maximum for individual training and implementation and 30 minutes for assessment. The use of volunteers and donated space mitigated additional costs.
Conclusions
Remote asynchronous and group skills teaching for new general surgical interns improved their confidence in conducting procedural ICDs. A patient-simulation verification process appeared feasible with preliminary evidence of retest and internal consistency.

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