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The Family Medicine Clerkship is a required four-week rotation. Students are placed in a community or residency site and become an integral part of the health care team.
The clerkship emphasizes strengthening competencies in history taking, physical examination skills, problem differentiation, disease prevention and management, written and oral presentations. In applying these skills, students develop an understanding
of the concept of a medical home in patient care: comprehensive, patient-centered, longitudinal primary care.
Working one-on-one with family physicians, students will integrate knowledge of the basic sciences with the biopsychosocial factors that critically impact a patient’s experience of illness and health in the care of the patient.
Our clerkship has integrated learning threads related to diversity, equity and inclusion as well as wellness-science to create a unique experience during the rotation.
The third-year family medicine clerkship at the University of Cincinnati places a strong emphasis on promoting diversity, equity and inclusion within its curriculum. The clerkship has developed a range of initiatives to ensure that medical students are
adequately prepared to provide equitable and culturally sensitive care to patients from diverse backgrounds. These efforts are integrated into clinical skills, workshops and didactics that aim to increase cultural competence and reduce bias in medicine.
Standardized patient exercises are designed to simulate real-world scenarios that students are likely to encounter in their future medical practice. They help students develop the skills needed to navigate cultural differences, communicate effectively
with patients, and provide equitable care. The clerkship also incorporates representative patient vignettes that reflect the diverse patients seen within family medicine. These vignettes enable medical students to prepare to meet the needs of their
future patients. The clerkship places a strong emphasis on addressing bias in medicine. Medical students are provided with opportunities to explore the ways in which unconscious bias can impact patient care and to develop strategies to mitigate its
effects. By taking a proactive approach to addressing bias, the clerkship helps to ensure that medical students are well-prepared to provide equitable and culturally sensitive care to all patients.
Medical student burnout and high levels of distress during medical school have been well-documented, and there is a growing recognition of the need for preventive- medicine based curriculum in medical education with a focus on health and healing. In response
to this need, the third-year family medicine clerkship at many institutions, including the University of Cincinnati, has developed an integrated preventive medicine curriculum to promote self-care and prepare students for patient encounters where
wellness and lifestyle practices are discussed. The purpose of the curriculum is to equip students with tools and strategies to promote their own wellbeing and resilience, while also enabling them to engage in meaningful conversations with patients
about health, healing and lifestyle practices.
The integrated preventive medicine curriculum includes a range of activities, such as debriefing on challenging clinical cases, nutrition and integrative medicine content, and a health and healing workshop. Through these activities, medical students learn
to recognize the importance of self-care and develop practical tools for managing stress and promoting well-being. By integrating preventive medicine into the clerkship curriculum, medical students are better prepared to manage the demands of medical
school and navigate the challenges of clinical practice. They are also better equipped to provide holistic care to patients that addresses not only their medical needs, but also their wellbeing and lifestyle practices.
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