ChangeMedEd Initiative

5 more medical schools join innovative medical education consortium

Brendan Murphy , Senior News Writer

The group responsible for creating the medical schools of the future is multiplying its membership.

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The AMA Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium, a partnership between the AMA and medical schools, has added five new members to the fold, bringing the group’s total membership to 37.

The five schools joining the innovative collective are:

  • Stanford University School of Medicine.
  • University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine (UC Irvine).
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine (Pitt).
  • Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC).
  • Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine (VCU).

“For nearly six years, the AMA has been working with some of the nation’s leading medical schools to create the medical schools of the future. Working together, we have already made significant progress toward preparing future physicians to provide care in the modern, technology-driven health care environment,” said AMA President-elect Patrice A. Harris, MD, MA. “Knowing that our work is far from complete, we are excited to welcome five additional medical schools to our community as we promote innovation to tackle the biggest challenges in health care.”

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Past and ongoing consortium projects have included work on competency-based programs, teaching the electronic health record, increasing diversity among medical students, totally immersing medical students in physician leadership training, education in team-based care skills and curricula to help achieve health equity.

Accounting for the additional institutions, one-fifth of all U.S. allopathic and osteopathic medical schools are in the consortium The consortium’s innovative models are now supporting training for nearly 24,000 medical students who will one day care for 41 million patients a year.

USC joins the consortium with an aim to improve digital health literacy among medical trainees by creating curriculum and resources that equip physicians to help patients better navigate the digital health space.

VCU’s projects include a surgical coaching program geared toward improving well-being throughout medical school and residency. Additional areas of focus include creating a diversity-and-inclusion assessment instrument.

Stanford aims to use virtual reality technology to provide an immersive environment to educate residents and fellows on diversity. Additional efforts will focus on testing the effectiveness of nutritional strategies in improving performance during duty hours and using digital performance assessment tools.

UC Irvine's consortium work involves implementing what the school has referred to as its #MDsToo curriculum, a student mistreatment-prevention curriculum for faculty and residents. The training uses audience-response tools, case-based learning and reflective practice.

Lastly, Pitt will work to create a curriculum that addresses social determinants of health and expands from the early years of medical school into residency. Pitt will also introduce clinical reasoning materials to early undergraduate medical students.

In addition to receiving invitations to join the consortium, the five schools mentioned also won AMA-funded grants through the Accelerating Change in Medical Education Innovation Grant Program. That award aims to stimulate research, new innovations or dissemination of existing innovations in medical education to train future physicians to succeed in the rapidly evolving health care system.

This announcement marks the consortium’s second expansion. After an initial five-year commitment from 11 founding members in 2013, 21 schools joined the group in 2016. The AMA and its partner institutions recently committed to spending three additional years on projects that will shape the medical schools of the future. The commitment to the new schools also extends for three years.

As part of the AMA’s commitment to improving physician training across the continuum of medical education, the Association is in the process of expanding its efforts to graduate medical education. The AMA’s Reimagining Residency Initiative, a five-year, $15 million grant program, has the goal of transforming residency training to best address the workforce needs of the nation’s current and future health care system.