Preparing Undergraduate Medical Students for Future Practice – Development of a Future of Medicine Elective
The medical field operates in an ever-evolving state. The modern physician is expected to remain informed about the latest treatments, prescriptions, and procedures. One of the challenges facing medical education is ensuring medical students are taught the latest evidence-based information. In particular, medical students have limited exposure to the latest medical technologies that are transforming the way physicians treat patients. Having identified this lack of exposure, the authors designed, organized, and evaluated an elective curriculum to introduce their peers to emerging medical technologies. The elective aimed to familiarize fellow medical students with da Vinci Robotic surgery, Arthroscopic surgery simulation, 3D printing, electronic medical records, virtual reality via Google Glass and HoloLens, and multimodality cardiovascular imaging. This study surveyed the first and second year medical students enrolled in the Future of Medicine elective at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine. The evaluation found that this student-led, hands-on elective demonstrated high levels of student satisfaction, enrichment of the medical school experience, and the student’s desire to incorporate elements of the elective into both the standard medical school curriculum and into their future practices. The incorporation of emerging technologies into pre-clinical education can be beneficial to both medical schools seeking to improve the technological literacy of their graduates and to medical students interested in shaping the future of medicine.
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