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A Call for Outcomes Research in Medical Education

Chen, Frederick M. MD, MPH; Bauchner, Howard MD; Burstin, Helen MD, MPH

Academic Medicine:
Special Theme Article
Abstract

The primary goal of medical education is to produce physicians who deliver high-quality health care. Recent calls for greater accountability in medical education and the development of outcomes research methodologies should encourage a new research effort to examine the effects of medical training upon clinical outcomes. The authors offer a research agenda that links medical education and quality of health care and give specific examples of potential research projects that would begin to examine that relationship. A proposed model of patient outcomes research in medical education recognizes the contributory effects of health care system-level factors as well as the continuum of medical education, process measures, and individual training and preparedness to deliver high-quality care. There exists an opportunity to create a research agenda in medical education outcomes research that is multidisciplinary, broad based, and focused on patient-centered outcomes.

Author Information

Dr. Chen is a Kerr White Visiting Scholar, and Dr. Burstin is director, Center for Primary Care, Prevention, and Clinical Partnerships, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, Maryland; Dr. Bauchner is professor, Division of General Pediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Correspondence should be addressed to Dr. Chen, Department of Family Medicine, University of Washington, Box 354982, Seattle, Washington 98195; telephone: (206) 685–0402; e-mail: 〈fchen@u.washington.edu〉.

© 2004 Association of American Medical Colleges