Inaugural #ukhped chat…. what models of communication do we use?

At 9pm on Thursday 11th December Janet Foland, an occupational therapist, and myself (a GP) will be leading a chat about the different models of communication that we use in our professions. I’d initially suggested this because I thought that all health professions value communication and that it would therefore be interesting to see if we talked and taught about it in different ways. Straight away Janet replied with a tweet which straight away showed that this topic would work.

I asked Janet if she would co-lead the discussion with me.

As background in medical education, the Calgary-Cambridge model has been quite dominant in the last decade or so. And t looks as if it has spread into other professions. It is very instrumental compared to that Taylor’s Intentional relationship model which Janet linked to. in 2012 the Health Foundation published a wonderful paper on the need for a new model of the consultation. It’s a great read if you can find the time.

Later we will start by asking three questions-

1. What models of communication are common in your profession?

2. How are these taught and discussed with learners?

3. What can we learn from other professions about communication?

Please do join us if you can and make history!


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Perceptions of General Practice in #UKMedEd


General practitioners are often presented with greater scrutiny by the media. Classically referred to as the ‘Gatekeepers of the NHS,’ GPs are undoubtedly the face of healthcare to the general public and yet general practice is often not taken as seriously as hospital-based specialties throughout medical education.

Pursuing a career in general practice within the medical school culture is sometimes thought of as an ‘easier’ career path in terms of challenges or opportunities. In reality, GPs face daily challenges as the first port-of-call for health complaints and, often, social issues.

How can a career in General Practice be made more attractive?

Educational Processes:

General Practitioners are one of the most aptly named specialties, as true generalists not just in medical specialty, but also in responsibilities to patients. Systems block teaching processes encourage system-based thinking, and could inevitably reduce the prospects of generalism in diagnostic thinking.

What can medical educators and GPs do to encourage generalism and system integration?

We’ll be discussing all of this in this week’s #UKMedEd chat on Thursday 4 December at 4pm.  Leading the chat will be John Fyffe and Mei Lin Lee who are both undertaking an intercalated BMSc Teaching in Medicine at Dundee.   They’ve put forward this week’s topic based on their experience of the Dundee MBChB curriculum which incorporates General Practice and Primary Care (GPPC) as an integral, ongoing portion of the undergraduate course culminating in a weekly three hour session organised by the GPPC coordinators.  These sessions are often held in city and suburban practices and include tasks for General Practice education, but are subject to interpretation by the tutors themselves.

In contrast ward teaching, however, is integral to system-based blocks that run from years 1-3, involving students in Ward rounds and discussions at the time of the block.  Regardless, 40% of Dundee students follow into general practice.

With General Practice becoming a less and less popular career choice (Svirko, Goldacre, & Lambert, 2013), could a bottom-up approach changing the education help?  One of the questions they’ll be posing is what curriculum design changes could improve General Practice teaching?

We hope you can join us!

Svirko, E., Goldacre, M. J., & Lambert, T. (2013). Career choices of the United Kingdom medical graduates of 2005, 2008 and 2009: questionnaire surveys. Medical Teacher, 35(5), 365–75. doi:10.3109/0142159X.2012.746450



Time for #ukhped ??

NHSHD_25Jan_091  Photography by Paul Clarke for NHS Hack Day Cardiff

Photography by Paul Clarke for NHS Hack Day Cardiff

We’ve been doing the #ukmeded chats off and on for the last few years. Everyone is welcome to participate in the chats- medical students, doctors teaching students, doctors not teaching students, patients, public, other health professions. We encourage this. But maybe it is time to use a new hashtag which everyone can use to signify that they are sharing or talking about something that will be of interest to many health professionals, students, patients. Tonight at 9pm we’re going to try and use the #ukhped tag to see if people think that there is a need for a tag like this and how it might be used. Please join us!

PS I used the NHS Hack Day pic because it is all about different people learning together. Oh and you can come to the next one in Cardiff in January!

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#UKMedEd chat 6 Nov: GMC State of Medical Education and Practice report 2014

This week’s #ukmeded chat will be discussing the GMC State of Medical Education and Practice Report 2014 and will be led by Rajiv Sethi a Year 4 MBBS student from King’s College London.

With the recent publication of the GMC State of Medical Education and Practice report 2014 ( #stateofmed ) we hope that chat will provide an insight into the views from across #ukmeded regarding optimal preparation for practice for medical students entering the foundation programme. Key points from the report include variation between medical school graduates with regard to how prepared they feel for Foundation year 1, ranging from 65% to 85% at UK medical schools. The report also highlights foundation doctor concerns on prescribing properly and communicating with patients. Our next #ukmeded chat will focus on the preparation for practice theme and the below questions:

How does your medical school prepare medical students for practice?

In light of the GMC report, are there any plans to change this or introduce new areas? E.g. focus on prescribing

How can we improve the medical student to junior doctor transition?

Do you think the timing of finals affects how prepared for practice graduates feel? Would earlier assessments for medical students lead to a better perception of their preparation for practice?

We hope you can join us at 9pm on Thursday 6 November.



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Responsible electives – #ukmeded Twitter chat Thurs 9 Oct at 9pm

This evening’s UKmeded Twitter chat is looking at electives. All agree electives can be fantastic – great learning, adventure, eye opening. But we also know they can be risky and sometimes dodgy on many levels. There is a move to try and improve them, especially for those in resource poor settings. Dundee Medical School is building a system of responsible electives and we are interested in views from the UKMedEd community about this. We have been granted an award that is being used to offer £500 bursaries to students from UK/Eire who wish to support this cause.  More details are on the website but 2 are available this month. The questions we’ll be asking/answering during the chat will emanate from the theme Electives in Resource Poor settings. Specific questions we’ll look at will include:

  • Should electives in resource poor be about more than clinical skills, and maybe specifically include promoting a sense of responsibility to help tackle health inequalities.
  • If so, how can educators help change students mind-set.
  • How can students prepare better for their elective, especially when planning to go to developing countries
  • Can electives nurture a commitment for students and (academics) to engage more in global health activities
  • Can Electives in resource poor settings be managed in a Fair Trade¹ way, perhaps?

Look forward to discussing these issues in tonight chat at 9.00pm UK time.

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New season of #UKmeded chats kicks off on 8 October

Embed from Getty Images

The #UKmeded Twitter chats have been in hibernation for a while but Anne Marie and I are pleased to announce that we’re starting up again on Thursday 8 October.  We’ll be running at the usual time of 9pm UK time for an hour officially but we know the conversation often carries on beyond that.

The first topic up for discussion is responsible electives which will be led by Dr Jon Dowell and the responsible electives team at the Dundee Medical School.  All medical students organise some sort of elective during there studies and whilst some choose to undertake these in their home country many use the elective as an opportunity to experience in another culture including in resource poor countries.  Some students feel unprepared for what they experience in some cultures or uncomfortable about what’s expected of them by their host organisation and a number of medical schools are now looking more seriously at preparing their students for their elective experience.  We’ll be looking at issues around electives in more detail and be posting some more information ahead of the chat.

The following week on 16 October we’re delighted to welcome back Anya de Longh who will be leading the discussion on medical ethics along with Dr Julie Wintrup from the University of Southampton.  More info will follow on this.

If you’d like to suggest topics for future topics for the #UKmeded Twitter chats then do tweet me (@nlafferty) or Anne Marie (@amcunningham) with your ideas or go to our Google Form and tell us more about your idea there.  We welcome suggestions from across the health care professions, from practising health care professionals both at junior, mid and senior levels and patients.  If you propose a topic we’ll

  1. be in touch with you to arrange a date for the chat
  2. ask you to write a short blog post either on your own blog or on this blog with a brief outline of the topic and a few questions that will help get people thinking and help to frame the discussion
  3. encourage you to lead the chat – we will be on hand to support you so you won’t be alone.

Hope you can join us next Thursday.

Looking forward to some interesting conversations 🙂

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15th May – #ukmeded chat with Anya de Iongh

Thursday 15th May 2014

9pm #ukmeded with Anya de Iongh (@anyadei)

It is great to have the opportunity to co-create a Twitter chat with the #ukmeded team combining my two passions – medical education and patient involvement!

The theme for this #ukmeded chat is patient involvement – an opportunity for patients, professionals and students to explore together the potential of patients within medical and healthcare education.

The value of patients as teachers has been long known (Osler mentions it in 1904: “For the junior student in medicine and surgery, it is a safe rule to have no teaching without a patient for a text, and the best teaching is that taught by the patient himself.”)

But the potential of patients in education extends beyond teaching, and even the role of patients in teaching can be modernised and further developed.

Some questions to think about….

What are the different roles that patients could have in education?

What does good patient involvement mean for patients, professionals and students?

What are the main barriers to good involvement, and how can these be overcome?

What do we (patients, professionals and students) need to do to promote and fulfil this potential of patient involvement?

As pre-reading, my recent blog on the ‘who, what, why, when, how, where?’ of PPI in meded might help warm you up for this chat…

Looking forward to tweeting with you on Thursday!

Anya de Iongh

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