These are the residents you want!
Comparing performance in family medicine residencies of graduates from longitudinal integrated clerkships and rotation-based clerkships. Woloschuk W et al. Academic Medicine 2014; 89; 296-300.
Reviewed by Angie Thompson-Busch
What was the study question?
How does Family Medicine Residency performance of graduates of a Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (LIC) compare to that of their Rotation-Based Clerkship (RBC) trained peers?
How was the study done?
In 2008, the University of Calgary developed an LIC that allows students to train in multiple disciplines concurrently instead of the traditional RBC model. Students chose to enter the LIC or RBC track. Residency directors for graduating students who chose a family medicine residency over the following three years completed a questionnaire at the end of the first year of residency.
What were the results?
122 students matched in family medicine. 22 of these 124 had trained in the LIC track. Responses from resident program directors revealed that LIC graduates received scores at or above their peers. The questionnaire evaluated clinical acumen, human sensitivity and overall performance.
What are the implications?
Previous studies have revealed that students who have trained in an alternative LIC are at least as successful as their RBC-trained peers in regards to knowledge and clinical skills. The data from this paper suggests that the performance and attitudes of these LIC-trained students extend into residency. While larger numbers of students will need to be studied to show any statistical significance between LIC-trained physicians and their RBC-trained peers, it is encouraging to see that novel curricula models are worth investigating for improving overall medical education.
Editor's Note: This is heartening news for the many existing LICs (approximately 30 at last count) at medical schools in the US and Canada as well as those at medical schools like mine (Brown) in the process of developing same. (RR)