Clinical Skills Verification in General Psychiatry: Recommendations of the ABPN Task Force on Rater Training

Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, United States
Academic Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 0.81). 09/2012; 36(5):363-8. DOI: 10.1176/appi.ap.10040061
Source: PubMed


The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) announced in 2007 that general psychiatry training programs must conduct Clinical Skills Verification (CSV), consisting of observed clinical interviews and case presentations during residency, as one requirement to establish graduates’ eligibility to sit for the written certification examination. To facilitate implementation of these requirements, the ABPN convened a task force to prepare training materials for faculty and programs to guide them in the CSV process. This article reviews the specific requirements for the CSV experience within general residency programs, and briefly describes the recommendations of the task force for faculty training and program implementation.
Materials prepared by the ABPN Task Force include background information on the intent of the observed interview, a literature review on assessment methods, aids to train faculty in direct observation of clinical work, directions for effective feedback, notes regarding special issues for cross-cultural trainees, clarification of performance standards, and recommendations for structuring and conducting the assessments.
Recommendations of the task force include the use of a variety of clinical settings for CSV assessments, flexibility in the duration of CSV interviews, use of formative and summative feedback after each CSV assessment, and frequent use of the CSV across all years of training. Formal faculty training is recommended to help establish performance parameters, increase inter-rater reliability, and improve the quality of feedback.
The implementation of the CSV process provides psychiatry training programs with an excellent opportunity to assess how interviewing skills are taught and evaluated. In the process, psychiatry educators have an opportunity to establish performance parameters that will guide the training of residents in patient interaction and evaluation.

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    ABSTRACT: A few years ago, when the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology decided to phase out the patient-based oral examinations in its 3 primary specialties, requirements for assessing clinical skills during residency training were instituted. The purpose of this report is to describe the experiences of training program directors and graduates with these new credentialing requirements (labeled CSEs) as well as other effects on the specialties. Surveys were administered electronically in 2012 to all current neurology, child neurology, and psychiatry program directors, and to a convenience sample of graduates who applied for the 2012 certification examinations. Response rates for graduates were similar across the 3 specialties but low (28%-33%). Response rates were higher for program directors (53%-62%) and were similar across the 3 specialties. The results indicated that the CSEs were usually administered early in training, were completed toward the end, were often passed on first attempt, generally took place during routine clinical assignments, were used to assess additional competencies, almost always included feedback to the residents, and did not often lead to remediation. Furthermore, the CSEs were perceived to be useful components in the assessment of clinical skills. The results obtained from the early implementation of the CSEs suggest that they provide an opportunity to assess clinical skills with the additional benefit of feedback to trainees. Other effects included eventual incorporation into training program requirements, milestones, and related faculty development and research efforts.
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