2014 Annual Oration: Medical Education Across The Continuum

This year’s Annual Oration, Medical Education Across The Continuum: A Snapshot in Time, focused on changes in medical school curriculum have impacted residency training, how residency training influences change in practice, and how clinical practice now informs continuing medical education.

The speaker Michele P. Pugnaire, MD, professor of Family Medicine and Community Health and Senior Associate Dean for Educational Affairs at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, spoke of the changes in the medical education process over the past century. “We are what I am calling `forever learners’ because that is what is expected by the public, our patients and our students,” said Dr. Pugnaire.

There are four drivers in medical educational change: team-based learning, practice-based learning/simulations, outcome-based learning, and improvement based learning, said Dr. Pugnaire. Today’s medical schools are embracing all of them, and some programs are switching from timeline-based programs to more flexible curriculum that judges competency rather than time spent in a classroom, she said.

The future will inevitable cause the educational driving forces to converge on a shared goal  for learning: patient safety and quality medical care, she said.

“We are training the next generation of future physicians – our replacements. They will be taking care of us and our families, so we had better do a very good job,” she said.

The MMS Annual Oration dates back to 1804 when Dr. Isaac Rand delivered his dissertation entitled, On Phthisis Pulmonalis, and the Use of the Warm Bath.  For more than 200 years, MMS orators have addressed a wide spectrum of topics germane to the evolving practice of medicine.


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