Teaching Pediatric Palliative Care Communication Skills to Fourth-Year Medical Students Through Role-Play

Title

Teaching Pediatric Palliative Care Communication Skills to Fourth-Year Medical Students Through Role-Play

Creator

Cowfer B; McGrath C; Trowbridge A

Publisher

MedEdPORTAL

Date

2020

Subject

Case-Based Learning; Communication; End of Life; Goals of Care; Hospice & Palliative Medicine; Palliative Care; Pediatric Critical Care Medicine; Pediatrics; Resident Facilitators; Role-Play; Virtual Learning

Description

INTRODUCTION: Despite growing recognition of pediatric palliative care's importance, training in palliative care communication remains a gap in medical education. Graduating medical students frequently feel unprepared to initiate or facilitate goals of care conversations with their patients, particularly in pediatrics. METHODS: We created a 3-hour session featuring an introductory lecture on pediatric palliative care, communication drills on responding to emotion, and small-group case-based discussions utilizing role-play, targeting fourth-year medical students as the primary learners. Senior residents were also given the opportunity to develop skills by role-playing the patient parent and cofacilitating case discussions alongside palliative care faculty. Students evaluated session utility and their own confidence through pre- and postsession surveys using a 5-point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 5 = strongly agree). RESULTS: Twenty-six students were included in the analysis over 3 years. All agreed that the session was useful (M = 4.9). Students showed significant improvement in confidence in explaining pediatric palliative care (presession M = 3.2, postsession M = 4.1, p < .001), understanding the family experience (presession M = 2.7, postsession M = 4.1, p < .001), and eliciting goals and values from families whose children face serious illnesses (presession M = 3.1, postsession M = 4.1, p < .001). Pediatric resident cofacilitators also felt the session benefited their own teaching and communication skills. DISCUSSION: This 3-hour interactive session on pediatric palliative care utilizing communication drills and role-play was effective in improving fourth-year medical students' confidence in communicating with families of children facing life-threatening illnesses.

Rights

Article information provided for research and reference use only. PedPalASCNET does not hold any rights over the resource listed here. All rights are retained by the journal listed under publisher and/or the creator(s).

Citation List Month

December 2020 List

Collection

Citation

Cowfer B; McGrath C; Trowbridge A, “Teaching Pediatric Palliative Care Communication Skills to Fourth-Year Medical Students Through Role-Play,” Pediatric Palliative Care Library, accessed September 20, 2021, https://pedpalascnetlibrary.omeka.net/items/show/17278.

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