Is feedback to medical learners associated with characteristics of improved patient care?

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Medical Education, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Family Medicine, Library

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Perspectives on medical education


PURPOSE: To investigate the association of medical learner feedback with patient management and outcomes.

METHODS: The authors investigated 27 articles that utilized patient data or chart reviews as a subset of a prior feedback scoping review. Data extraction was completed by two authors and all authors reviewed the descriptive data analysis.

RESULTS: The studies were predominantly short-term investigations conducted in the US at academic teaching hospitals (89%) with one medical discipline (78%), most commonly internal medicine (56%). Patient-related outcomes primarily involved improved documentation (26%) and adherence to practice guidelines (19%) and were mostly measured through chart reviews (56%) or direct observation (15%). The primary method of feedback delivery involved a written format (30%). The majority of the studies showed a positive effect of feedback on the patient-oriented study outcomes (82%), although most involved a non-rigorous study design.

CONCLUSIONS: Published studies focusing on the relationship between medical learner feedback and patient care are sparse. Most involve a single discipline at a single institution and are of a non-rigorous design. Measurements of improved patient outcomes are restricted to changes in management, procedures and documentation. Well-designed studies that directly link learner feedback to patient outcomes may help to support the use of feedback in teaching clinical outcomes improvement in alignment with competency-based milestones.



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