Psychiatry in Medicine: Five Years of Experience With an Innovative Required Fourth-Year Medical School Course
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The author reports on a required fourth-year course, Psychiatry in Medicine, which was started in 1999 at Stony Brook Medical School. The aim was to address two important concerns in medical education at Stony Brook and throughout the United States: 1) the failure to recognize psychiatric pathology in outpatient medical settings and 2) the lack of education about psychosomatic medicine.
Details about the creation, implementation, and content of the course are presented along with student evaluations and assessment after 5 years.
Eighty five percent of students felt the course would benefit their careers, and they indicated that their clinical behavior would be changed by the course.
Findings indicate that it is both viable and valuable for medical schools to create courses similar to Psychiatry in Medicine. It is argued that the fourth year is especially fertile ground for such a course.
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