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Vol 9, No 1 (2010)
Original articles
Published online: 2010-04-23
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Competence in palliative and end of life care — general surgery and family medicine residencies

Brian G. Celso, Darrell Graham, Joseph J. Tepas, Senthil Meenrajan, Miren A. Schinco
Advances in Palliative Medicine 2010;9(1):3-8.

open access

Vol 9, No 1 (2010)
Original articles
Published online: 2010-04-23

Abstract

Background: Palliative care and end of life care is being emphasized ever more in everyday practice of medicine. Many of the specialty boards either recommend or require education in these aspects of care of patients during residency. The specific strengths and weakness of a given residency might help tailor a curriculum that is relevant and addresses the perceived strengths and weakness of the residents in that specialty.
Objective: The aim of this study was to compare general surgery residents’ self-perceived attitudes, confidence, and concerns, as it relates to effectively practicing palliative and end of life care, to family medicine residents.
Material and methods: The Attitudes Toward Death and Palliative Medicine Comfort and Confidence Surveys were used to assess self-perceived competence with palliative medicine. Surgery and family medicine residents in a major University medical center were surveyed. Data was analyzed with t-tests for independent measures. Statistical significance was set at p < .05.
Results: University of Florida surgery residents assessed their attitudes about dealing with dying patients as significantly more positive (t = 2.25, df = 38, p = 0.03) and their level of confidence in providing palliative care as significantly higher (t = 2.60, df = 30, p = 0.01) than family medicine residents. Surgery residents expressed similar concerns about end-of-life issues (t = 0.14, df = 38, p = 0.89) as family medicine residents.
Conclusions: Both similarities and differences existed in the self-perceptions of surgery and family medicine residents about palliation and end of life issues. Recognizing the importance of palliation as a competency, curriculum can be tailored to meet the specific needs of a residency program as well as the establishment of specific benchmarks that all training programs must achieve.
Adv. Pall. Med. 2010; 9, 1: 3–8

Abstract

Background: Palliative care and end of life care is being emphasized ever more in everyday practice of medicine. Many of the specialty boards either recommend or require education in these aspects of care of patients during residency. The specific strengths and weakness of a given residency might help tailor a curriculum that is relevant and addresses the perceived strengths and weakness of the residents in that specialty.
Objective: The aim of this study was to compare general surgery residents’ self-perceived attitudes, confidence, and concerns, as it relates to effectively practicing palliative and end of life care, to family medicine residents.
Material and methods: The Attitudes Toward Death and Palliative Medicine Comfort and Confidence Surveys were used to assess self-perceived competence with palliative medicine. Surgery and family medicine residents in a major University medical center were surveyed. Data was analyzed with t-tests for independent measures. Statistical significance was set at p < .05.
Results: University of Florida surgery residents assessed their attitudes about dealing with dying patients as significantly more positive (t = 2.25, df = 38, p = 0.03) and their level of confidence in providing palliative care as significantly higher (t = 2.60, df = 30, p = 0.01) than family medicine residents. Surgery residents expressed similar concerns about end-of-life issues (t = 0.14, df = 38, p = 0.89) as family medicine residents.
Conclusions: Both similarities and differences existed in the self-perceptions of surgery and family medicine residents about palliation and end of life issues. Recognizing the importance of palliation as a competency, curriculum can be tailored to meet the specific needs of a residency program as well as the establishment of specific benchmarks that all training programs must achieve.
Adv. Pall. Med. 2010; 9, 1: 3–8
Get Citation

Keywords

palliative care; general surgery; family medicine residents

About this article
Title

Competence in palliative and end of life care — general surgery and family medicine residencies

Journal

Advances in Palliative Medicine

Issue

Vol 9, No 1 (2010)

Pages

3-8

Published online

2010-04-23

Bibliographic record

Advances in Palliative Medicine 2010;9(1):3-8.

Keywords

palliative care
general surgery
family medicine residents

Authors

Brian G. Celso
Darrell Graham
Joseph J. Tepas
Senthil Meenrajan
Miren A. Schinco

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