Dr. Tracy Bumsted on how OHSU is "future-proofing" medical education

October 2, 2015

Tracy BumstedTracy Bumsted, M.D., MPH, associate dean for undergraduate medical education, OHSU School of Medicine, wrote a guest column about OHSU's curriculum transformation initiative in the higher education online newspaper, EvoLLLution. The school's curriculum, YOUR M.D., emphasizes a competency-based education model and prepares M.D. students to be leaders in a rapidly changing health care system. In the piece, called "Future-Proofing Medical Education: Transitioning to a Competency Model," Dr. Bumsted wrote:

"Traditionally, medical schools have been structured in a “2+2” model that is time-fixed: two years of basic science learning taught primarily in a classroom setting, followed by another two years of hospital-based clinical rotations. Under this system, students typically spent over half of their time watching lectures, memorizing and reading with a focus on acquiring basic scientific knowledge. It wasn’t until the clinical years that these students learned the patient-care and procedure skills considered essential to becoming a physician. While there is no question that scientific knowledge, patient care and procedure skills are absolutely critical to medical education, what is missing in this traditional system is attention to other, equally important elements of doctoring, including communication, collaboration, teamwork, critical-thinking, quality improvement, efficient use of system resources and professionalism.

Today’s physicians need to know a lot, but discovering answers to new questions, embracing a team approach, and integrating health care delivery science—things like patient safety, clinical informatics and population health—into daily practice are equally important lifelong skills."

Learn more about YOUR M.D. on the school's curriculum transformation website. Read the column in its entirety on the EvoLLLution website.