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Embedding Informatics into Clinical Education

Embedding Informatics into Clinical Education

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Published by Mark Hawker
The pace of change of health innovation means that on graduation today’s medical students can expect to be working in a radically-different NHS. Their ability to work with the information technology will be critical to effective, safe and efficient delivery of clinical care. We are exploring how to use a live clinical information system in our primary care teaching module. Prior to their general practice placements students participate in a session where they record a full consultation, explore and use clinical coding, prescribe medication and use specialist clinical tools. Students are actively encouraged to review each others’ entries and explore the implications for record keeping, audit and continuity of care. We believe that by preparing students earlier for the future IT-based working environments we have enhanced their undergraduate training.
The pace of change of health innovation means that on graduation today’s medical students can expect to be working in a radically-different NHS. Their ability to work with the information technology will be critical to effective, safe and efficient delivery of clinical care. We are exploring how to use a live clinical information system in our primary care teaching module. Prior to their general practice placements students participate in a session where they record a full consultation, explore and use clinical coding, prescribe medication and use specialist clinical tools. Students are actively encouraged to review each others’ entries and explore the implications for record keeping, audit and continuity of care. We believe that by preparing students earlier for the future IT-based working environments we have enhanced their undergraduate training.

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Published by: Mark Hawker on Jul 23, 2010
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09/20/2012

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EmbeddingInformaticsintoClinicalEducation
March 25
2010
 
The pace of change of health innovation means that on
graduation today’s medical students can expect to be working
in a radically-different NHS. Their ability to work with theinformation technology will be critical to effective, safe andefficient delivery of clinical care. We are exploring how to use alive clinical information system in our primary care teachingmodule. Prior to their general practice placements studentsparticipate in a session where they record a full consultation,explore and use clinical coding, prescribe medication and usespecialist clinical tools. Students are actively encouraged to
review each others’ entries and explore the implications for
record keeping, audit and continuity of care. We believe thatby preparing students earlier for the future IT-based workingenvironments we have enhanced their undergraduate training.
 A BriefingPaper for theUK Faculty of HealthInformatics
 
 
Page 1Prepared by the Yorkshire Centre for Health Informatics
Introduction
There is a growing recognition of the importance of the use of clinical information systems (CIS) inprofessional practice. The goals of the health services in the UK and elsewhere in the world are toimprove the quality of patient care, increase safety and do so cost effectively. The recognition thatsophisticated information management is crucial to achieving these goals lies at the heart of thecurrent reforms in healthcare and is driving the uptake of clinical systems throughout the world [4,5]. The NHS National Programme for IT (NPfIT) is modernising the CIS that the NHS relies on todeliver better, safer care to patients and is attracting considerable interest from around the world asa leading example of how IT is being used to transform clinical care [6]. Students now studying for amedical degree can expect to be working in a networked information environment radically differentfrom that which current healthcare providers, their tutors and the public have been used to withnew information tools shaping the clinical environment in the coming years [1].The Yorkshire Centre for Health Informatics (YCHI) have an established working group entitledClinical Information Systems for Primary Care (CIS4PC) which is dedicated to the development of relevant and up-to-date clinical education for all primary health care practitioners including doctorsand nurses. The group is working with Leeds Medical School to develop an informatics verticaltheme through all 5 years of the undergraduate medical curriculum at Leeds and a key element of this has been the use of real clinical information systems in hands-on sessions which we have foundto be extremely successful and engaging for our students.Our feasibility study considered approaches being taken elsewhere such as the creation of virtualhospitals and Second-Life environments [10]. We concluded that despite many publications aboutprototypes built by enthusiasts none have reached a level of maturity or sustainability whichmatches the systems already in use in clinical practice. We also felt that such systems would be toocostly to develop and maintain locally and would not truly reflect the working environment to whichwe wished to expose our students. We concluded that it is necessary to embed the use of CIS withinclinical teaching in the undergraduate curriculum such that our graduates are prepared for thefuture world and we have therefore taken an alternative approach of using a mature NHS primarycare product as the core platform.
Background
At a national level the Embedding Informatics in Clinical Education (eICE) Project was set up in 2008by CfH with the aim of promoting and facilitating the teaching of informatics as an essential part of 
 
 
Page 2Prepared by the Yorkshire Centre for Health Informatics
clinical training programmes. Its first task was to undertake a review of the guidance “Learni
ng to
Manage Health Information” which had been first published in 1999 and then reviewed in 2002.
After a wide-ranging consultation the revised and updated publication was launched at a nationalconference for clinical educators in March 2009.In 2009/10 and beyond the eICE project will concentrate on making the guidance widely available,promoting its use and carrying out a range of activities to support its implementation. The mainobjectives of the project are:
 
To promote the need to embed informatics in clinical education to a range of targetgroups including education commissioners, education providers and clinical professionregulators.
 
To promote and facilitate the use of ‘Learning to Manage Health Information 2009’.
 
 
To support the development of health informatics knowledge and skills in clinicaleducators.
 
To develop a variety of resources to support clinical educators to embed informatics inclinical education.
 
To support the development of a clinical educators network.The project is designed and carried out in line with the following key principles:
 
The importance of promoting and including opportunities for interdisciplinary teachingwherever possible.
 
The need to focus on clinical practice and demonstrating how informatics can improvepatient care.
 
The necessity of ensuring that activity links to strategic objectives and that theinvestment in activity has maximum impact.
 
The need to learn from previous projects and ensure lessons learnt are remembered.The difference between the current and future working environment for clinical students beingtrained today will be greater than that experienced by the current generation of clinicians. This isdue to the rapid technological change occurring against a background of increasing financialpressure. As clinicians they will be accessing live patient data using portable hand-held devices in adistributed, team-based clinical environment supported by knowledge-based tools to aid theinterpretation of a plethora of new information (e.g. genetic and risk data) generated from a host of new diagnostic devices and tools.

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