Over the past week, we’ve conducted a series of design thinking sessions with our preceptors and residents to gather their ideas on healthcare and medical education. In our recent Wednesday night session, we explored incorporating patients in the delivery of our medical education; reinforcing health as a life skill in the clinical setting; designing a clinic that educates patients on their health and wellbeing; and how we can use the visual arts to hone our observation skills. Here are a few snippets from our dialogue with preceptors:
How can we effectively incorporate patients in the delivery of our medical education?
Ideas that we proposed included inviting patients to participate in our academic half days, journal club sessions, and to help guide in resident research projects. We also discussed using patients’ narratives in our teaching; incorporating patient feedback in resident performance; and giving patients the opportunity to educate residents on how to perform better physical exams.
How do we reinforce health as a life skill in the clinical setting?
Ideas that emerged included providing educational seminars and counselling on health; posting letters from patients explaining their desire and decision to change unhealthy habits; using visual displays to disseminate health information; bulletin boards in offices promoting upcoming outdoor athletic activities such as races, mountain biking, and hiking; meeting patients outdoors for clinic visits and walking around the block; and collaborating with other health promoting agencies in the community.
Following this brainstorming activity, the preceptors worked in groups to design a clinical setting that educates patients on health and wellbeing.
Group 1 designed an integrated model for education where patients and their families may collaborate and learn. The clinic provides zones for patients to read and explore their health interests and concerns; to exercise and experience an active lifestyle such as trying a treadmill or lifting weights (see paperclips!); and to engage in collaborating with other health team members. Physicians’ offices were equipped with balance ball chairs. The setting was a cell phone free zone that included a suggestion box, a yoga room, a community board, anatomy models, and office pets (see two blue circle cats!).
Group 2 created a clinic to provide patients and their families access to education, mindfulness strategies, and therapeutic exercise. This team designed their setting to be personalized for each patient that walked through their doors. Using augmented reality, the patient would have accessible to them specific information regarding their health and any concerns or interests they may have. In this space, they offer patients a meditation area equipped with a fish tank; a room dedicated to spiritual wellness; an exercise room; and a juice bar with fresh fruit snacks.
Our final part of the session focused on the role of the visual arts in refining our observation and analysis. Clinical observation is fundamental in practicing medicine; however these skills are rarely taught in our academies. Furthermore, emerging research on visual arts training indicates that there’s a decrease in subjective descriptions and an increase in the scope of interpretations (Ge, 2013).
How do we use the visual arts in our medical education to hone our observation and analysis?Ideas we shared included displaying art that encourages patients and visitors to observe for details; to pause and reflect; and to learn about disease states. We discussed toys for children that are designed to have them construct the human body. We also suggested taking trips to art museums and spending more time outdoors assessing our environment and its changes.
A big thank you to our UBC Family Practice Preceptors for their participation and to the Abbotsford Division of Family Practice for providing us with a wonderful dinner and allowing us to use their space for this workshop!
~ Jacqueline, Program Coach
#designthinking #medicaleducation #healthcare #patientcentrededucation
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