Results of a multisite survey of U.S. psychiatry residents on education in professionalism and ethics.

VA Palo Alto Health Care System NCPTSD, Menlo Park, CA 94205, USA.
Academic Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 0.81). 05/2011; 35(3):175-83. DOI: 10.1176/appi.ap.35.3.175
Source: PubMed


The authors assess the perspectives of psychiatry residents about the goals of receiving education in professionalism and ethics, how topics should be taught, and on what ethical principles the curriculum should be based.
A written survey was sent to psychiatry residents (N=249) at seven U.S. residency programs in Spring 2005. The survey was based on an instrument originally developed at the University of New Mexico, consisting of 149 questions in 10 content domains, with 6 questions regarding ethics experiences during training and 5 demographic questions.
A total of 151 psychiatry residents (61%) returned usable responses to our survey. Residents reported receiving a moderate amount of ethics training during medical school (mean: 5.20; scale: 1: None to 9: Very Much) and some ethics training during residency (mean: 4.60). Residents endorsed moderate to moderately-strong agreement with all 11 goals of medical education in professionalism and ethics (means: 5.29 to 7.49; scale: 1: Strongly Disagree to 9: Strongly Agree). Respondents were more likely to endorse the value of clinically- and expert-oriented learning methods over web-based educational approaches.
U.S. psychiatry residents endorse a range of goals for education in professionalism and ethics. At the same time, they prefer that these topics be taught in clinically relevant ways and through expert instruction. The value of web-based approaches warrants further investigation.

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