Ethics education for medical house officers: long-term improvements in knowledge and confidence

Journal of Medical Ethics 23 (2):88-92 (1997)
  Copy   BIBTEX


OBJECTIVE: To examine the long-term effects of an innovative curriculum on medical house officers' (HOs') knowledge, confidence, and attitudes regarding medical ethics. DESIGN: Long term cohort study. The two-year curriculum, implemented by a single physician ethicist with assistance from other faculty, was fully integrated into the programme. It consisted of monthly sessions: ethics morning report alternating with didactic conferences. The content included topics such as ethics vocabulary and principles, withdrawing life support, informed consent, and justice. Identical content was offered simultaneously at the largest affiliated community hospital. SETTING: A multi-hospital university training programme from July, 1992 to June, 1994. PARTICIPANTS: Thirty-nine HOs responded in 92. Thirty HOs from the same cohort responded in 94 (response rates = 83% v 71%; P = 0.19). RESULTS: The curriculum was well received, with 96% of HOs finding the sessions stimulating. Previously validated scales of knowledge and confidence were administered at baseline and at follow-up. The average knowledge score improved 14% (P < 0.001). Confidence also improved, rising from 3.3 to 3.8 on a 5-point Likert scale (P < 0.001). These findings were independent of age, gender, religion, and prior education. The only attitudinal change was an increase in the proportion of residents who thought that ethics should be a required part of residency training (57% v 80%, P = 0.05). CONCLUSION: This curriculum appears practical, popular, and effective. It should be readily transferable to other institutions



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,252

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Teaching Medical Law in Medical Education.Rebecca S. Y. Wong & Usharani Balasingam - 2013 - Journal of Academic Ethics 11 (2):121-138.
Autonomy and Long-Term Care.George J. Agich - 1993 - Oxford University Press.
Ethics in long-term care: Are the principles different?Mark G. Kuczewski - 1999 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 20 (1):15-29.
Practical Guide for Medical Officers for Environmental Health.J. A. M. Gray - 1981 - Journal of Medical Ethics 7 (3):160-160.
Long-term Care Decisions: Ethical and Conceptual Dimensions.T. May - 1996 - Journal of Medical Ethics 22 (6):363-364.
Ethical issues in long-term psychiatric management.D. Dickenson - 1997 - Journal of Medical Ethics 23 (5):300-304.


Added to PP

138 (#129,754)

6 months
8 (#303,628)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Daniel Sulmasy
Georgetown University