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Navigate Stormy Seas with Effective Simulation Training in Delivering Serious News

Purpose: To evaluate the change in obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) resident’s self-confidence in delivering serious news after a communication simulation workshop.

Background: Although OB/GYN residents regularly disclose serious news to patients, formal training on best communication practices is lacking. Using the VitalTalk framework, we developed and evaluated a workshop for delivering serious news in OB/GYN.

Methods: OB/GYN residents attended a 3-hour small group workshop, with didactic and drills (1 hour) followed by practice delivering serious news with simulated patients (2 hours). Change in self-confidence pre- and post-workshop was measured using a 5-point Likert scale (1 is lowest, 5 is highest) and was compared using Wilcoxon signed rank test (alpha = 0.05).

Results: Twenty-five residents completed the training.  Residents agreed that delivering serious news requires a discrete set of skills (89%) and is a procedure all residents should learn (96%). Following the workshop, residents expressed greater confidence explaining medical information (p<0.01), identifying and responding to emotion cues (p<0.01), delivering serious news (p<0.001), and teaching learners about how to facilitate delivering serious news (p<0.001). Residents felt that it taught them skills they plan to use (96%), that simulated practice prepared them better than clinical experience alone (92%), that observing other residents improved their own communication skills (80%) and that they would recommend the workshop (96%).

Discussions: This workshop was well received and associated with improvement in self-confidence in delivering serious news. Longer-term observation is needed to see if this confidence persists and translates into improved patient care.

Topics: CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting, 2018, Student, Resident, Faculty, Clerkship Director, Clerkship Coordinator, Osteopathic Faculty, Residency Director, Patient Care, Professionalism, Interpersonal & Communication Skills, Practice-Based Learning & Improvement, GME, CME, UME, Simulation, Standardized Patient, Maternal-Fetal Medicine, General Ob-Gyn,

General Information

Student,Resident,Faculty,Clerkship Director,Clerkship Coordinator,Osteopathic Faculty,Residency Director,
Patient Care,Professionalism,Interpersonal & Communication Skills,Practice-Based Learning & Improvement,
Simulation,Standardized Patient,
Clinical Focus
Maternal-Fetal Medicine,General Ob-Gyn,

Author Information

Emily Fay, MD, University of Washington; Josephine Amory, MD; Caroline Hurd, MD; and Alyssa Stephenson-Famy, MD

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