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The Rate of Medical Student Mistreatment in Clinical Clerkships: The Impact of Increasing Awareness

Background: Mistreatment is a topic of increasing study and importance, as rates of medical student-reported mistreatment have escalated in recent years. Historically, Ob/Gyn is known to have high rates of mistreatment, second only to General Surgery. Our goal was to determine how an intervention to increase awareness would impact the rates of reported mistreatment, and more specifically address institution-specific shortcomings.


Methods: Presentations about mistreatment were given by the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Curriculum to students beginning clinical clerkships, and also to the Department of Ob/Gyn starting January 2016. Required electronic post-clerkship evaluations given to every student following clinical clerkships before and after this presentation were eligible for analysis (2011-2016). Rates and classification of student-reported mistreatment were analyzed. 


Results: Of the completed surveys,148 of 7332 (2.0%) students reported mistreatment before the presentation was given versus 45 of 1583 (2.76%) students reporting mistreatment after the presentation, p < 0.046. Thirteen total incidents of mistreatment in the Ob/Gyn department were reported. The majority (56%) of reported mistreatment was classified as “public belittlement or humiliation”


Discussions: It appears the dean increased awareness with students, resulting in a significantly increased rate of reported mistreatment. There were too few incidents in the department of Ob/Gyn to note whether the presentation to the members of the department had a positive or negative impact on the rate of mistreatment. 


Keywords: Communication Skills, Faculty Development, Student Mistreatment

Topics: CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting, 2017, Clerkship Director, Professionalism, UME, Faculty Development,

General Information

Clerkship Director,
Faculty Development,
Clinical Focus

Author Information

Alexandra Schefter, Medical Student; Marygrace Elson; Colleen Stockdale

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