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A. General Objectives of the Clinical Education Program
The College of Osteopathic Medicine Clinical Clerkship Program is designed to provide students with educational and clinical training in general areas of medicine. It is organized to permit the greatest degree of educational exposure in practical clinical environments as a means to develop general knowledge in the areas of patient diagnosis and management.
The College of Osteopathic Medicine is dedicated to training primary care physicians. The curriculum is designed to give students basic medical knowledge in diverse clinical areas. This “liberal arts” approach to medical education provides the necessary foundation to excel in all areas of medicine.
For each clerkship, the following Seven Osteopathic Medical Competencies are integrated, as appropriate:
Physician Competency is a measurable demonstration of suitable or sufficient knowledge, skill sets, experience, values, and behaviors, that meet established professional standards, supported by the best available medical evidence, that are in the best interest of the well-being and health of the patient.
- Patient Care: Osteopathic patient care is the ability to effectively determine and monitor the nature of a patient’s concern or problem; to develop, maintain, and to bring to closure the therapeutic physician-patient relationship; to appropriately incorporate osteopathic principles, practices and manipulative treatment; and to implement effective diagnostic and treatment plans, including appropriate patient education and follow-up, that are based on best medical evidence.
- Medical Knowledge: Medical Knowledge is the understanding and application of biomedical, clinical, epidemiological, biomechanical, and social and behavioral sciences in the context of patient-centered care.
- Practice-Based Learning & Improvement: Practice-Based learning and improvement is the continuous evaluation of clinical practice utilizing evidence-based medicine approaches to develop best practices that will result in optimal patient care outcomes.
- Professionalism: Medical professionalism is a duty to consistently demonstrate behaviors that uphold the highest moral and ethical standards of the osteopathic profession. This includes a commitment to continuous learning and the exhibition of personal and social accountability. Medical professionalism extends to those normative behaviors ordinarily expected in the conduct of medical education, training, research, and practice.
- System-Based Practice: System-based practice is an awareness of and responsiveness to the larger context and system of health care, and the ability to effectively identify and integrate system resources to provide care that is of optimal value to individuals and society at large.
- Interpersonal & Communication Skills: Interpersonal and communication skills are written, verbal, and non-verbal behaviors that facilitate understanding the patient’s perspective. These skills include building the physician-patient relationship, opening the discussion, gathering information, empathy, listening, sharing information, reaching agreement on problems and plans, and providing closure. These skills extend to Osteopathic Manipulative communication with patients, families, and members of the health care team.
- Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine: Osteopathic philosophy is a holistic approach that encompasses the psychosocial, biomedical, and biomechanical aspects of both health and disease, and stresses the relationship between structure and function, with particular regard to the musculoskeletal system.
Definitions Provided by the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME)
B. Regional Clinical Campus
Third year clerkship education is restricted to College of Osteopathic Medicine affiliated hospitals, most of which are members of the College of Osteopathic Medicine Educational Consortium (NYCOMEC) for osteopathic post-doctoral education. These affiliations offer varied educational opportunities in large urban medical centers, suburban community hospitals, and rural health care facilities.
In order to strengthen the osteopathic identity at these sites, as well as promote the mutual commitment to the college, College of Osteopathic Medicine and our hospital members to each other, the college has introduced the model of a “Regional Clinical Campus”.
As a first step in implementing this model, the college has designated several “full-service” hospitals or a group of hospitals in a geographic region, for assignment of students as a “block” for the entire (or majority of) third year core rotations.
By serving at one site/region, student education is enhanced through continuity, better inter-departmental integration, and involvement in extra clerkship activities such as on-going hospital-based research, special seminars, and designated mentor assignments. This also fosters the much needed clinical education continuum within the College of Osteopathic Medicine and NYCOMEC.
C. Rural Clerkships
In support of the college’s mission to promote rural primary care, rural clerkships are offered at selected affiliated hospitals located in various upstate New York areas.