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A randomised controlled trial of feedback to improve patient satisfaction and consultation skills in medical students.


ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:The use of feedback has been integral to medical student learning, but rigorous evidence to evaluate its education effect is limited, especially in the role of patient feedback in clinical teaching and practice improvement. The aim of the Patient Teaching Associate (PTA) Feedback Study was to evaluate whether additional written consumer feedback on patient satisfaction improved consultation skills among medical students and whether multisource feedback (MSF) improved student performance. METHODS:In this single site, double-blinded randomised controlled trial, 71 eligible medical students from two universities in their first clinical year were allocated to intervention or control and followed up for one semester. They participated in five simulated student-led consultations in a teaching clinic with patient volunteers living with chronic illness. Students in the intervention group received additional written feedback on patient satisfaction combined with guided self-reflection. The control group received usual immediate formative multisource feedback from tutors, patients and peers. Student characteristics, baseline patient-rated satisfaction scores and tutor-rated consultation skills were measured. RESULTS:Follow-up assessments were complete in 70 students attending the MSF program. At the final consultation episodes, both groups improved patient-rated rapport (P =?0.002), tutor-rated patient-centeredness and tutor-rated overall consultation skills (P =?0.01). The intervention group showed significantly better tutor-rated patient-centeredness (P =?0.003) comparing with the control group. Distress relief, communication comfort, rapport reported by patients and tutor-rated clinical skills did not differ significantly between the two groups. CONCLUSIONS:The innovative multisource feedback program effectively improved consultation skills in medical students. Structured written consumer feedback combined with guided student reflection further improved patient-centred practice and effectively enhanced the benefit of an MSF model. This strategy might provide a valuable adjunct to communication skills education for medical students. TRIAL REGISTRATION:Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry Number ACTRN12613001055796 .

PROVIDER: S-EPMC7439652 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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