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AMA News Room

Dec. 10, 2014

New Innovations in Health IT to be Unveiled at AMA Conference at the New Dell Medical School

For immediate release:
Dec. 10, 2014

UT joining AMA in reshaping medical education to ensure future physicians are prepared and empowered to succeed in the evolving healthcare landscape

Austin, Texas – As the Dell Medical School at The University of Texas (UT) at Austin takes shape, the American Medical Association (AMA) is convening leaders from top medical schools and leading health care technology companies at UT Austin today to share emerging technologies aimed at shaping the future of medical education. On the first day of the AMA's two-day conference on Medical Education and Learning Technology, medical schools are receiving demonstrations on some of the next generation technological advances available to train our future physicians and ensure they're prepared to care for patients in the evolving health care landscape.
Several medical schools within the UT System, as well as the University of Southern California, and two leading-edge health care technology companies will demonstrate new innovations in medical education, including a 3-D body platform and tech-savvy simulated patient applications.

The conference also marks the start of a new partnership with the University of Texas System aimed at expanding AMA efforts already underway to reshape medical education throughout the country. Leaders at UT say they are excited to join the AMA's ongoing work to close the gaps that currently exist between how medical students are educated and how health care is delivered now and in the future.

"The AMA is keenly aware that tomorrow's patients will need physicians who know how to appropriately use innovative technologies, lead health care teams and navigate the increasingly complex health care environment," said AMA CEO and Executive Vice President James L. Madara, M.D. "Our partnership with UT will significantly expand the AMA's work to accelerate change in medical education and help foster further innovations needed to transform medical education in Texas and across the country."

"This conference is a special opportunity to network and collaborate with other innovative medical school programs so that we can better prepare physicians and ultimately improve health care in our communities," said Ray Greenberg, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice chancellor for health affairs at the UT System.

The UT System soon will have six medical schools with the addition of the Austin-based Dell Medical School and the school of medicine at UT Rio Grande Valley. Both schools, scheduled to open in 2016, will be primed to implement innovative curriculums and technologies like those demonstrated during today's conference.

"A key part of our mission is to modernize medical education so it better incorporates best teaching practices, leverages technology, and matches curriculum to the needs of 21st century health care. The AMA has convened some of the most progressive medical educators who are testing a variety of important innovations at their schools," said Dell Medical School Dean Clay Johnston, M.D., Ph.D. "Since we're starting completely from scratch, we are a great partner that can integrate a variety of interventions initially tested elsewhere. We are the least constrained, so we can move quickly and extend the work done elsewhere. It's a great opportunity."

In 2013, eleven of the nation's top medical schools each received a $1 million dollar grant as part of the AMA's Accelerating Change in Medical Education grant initiative that launched last fall to transform medical education. As part of the initiative, the AMA established a consortium of the schools to share best practices and ideas for future implementation of their programs in medical schools across the country.

"We want to propel medical education into the 21st century and ultimately improve care and outcomes for patients," said Susan Skochelak, M.D., M.P.H., AMA Group Vice President for Medical Education. "Significant progress has already been made at many of the 11 medical schools that received AMA funding, including the development of new technology-based curriculums to ensure future physicians are trained on the use of electronic health records."

The schools' efforts are also changing the way medical students gain experience within the health care system from day one with new curriculums that give students with prior health care experience an opportunity to progress through medical school based on individual competency, and classes designed to boost physician leadership and team care skills.

Over the next four years, the AMA will continue to track, gather data and report on the progress of the medical schools' collective work in order to identify and widely disseminate the best models for transformative educational change.


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Media Contact:
Kelly Jakubek
AMA Media & Editorial
(312) 464-4443

Karen Adler
UT System
(512) 499-4360

Stephen Scheibal
Dell Medical School
(512) 495-5062

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