Letters to the Editor
We appreciate Dr. Steinert's comments on our work and welcome her highlighting the rich variation in backgrounds among those who educate medical learners. It is for this very reason that one of us (L.A.R.) uses her RN title along with PhD. The use of the term nonphysician medical educator serves in our research, and that of others,1 as a useful taxonomy for data collection. The label is in no way meant to be “a concept of exclusion, not inclusion” as stated by Dr. Steinert. We did not anticipate that “nonphysician” would be used as part of an individual's title.
Dr. Steinert also questions why our search terms were not published in the article. This project was an iterative process covering many years. Our original focus was on finding materials to support workshops we presented and on developing resources. As a result, we did not save our early searches, just the articles obtained from those searches (relevant and not relevant). In addition, the list of terms used by our medical librarian for the final search includes 10 different searches and over 75 terms. For that reason, we did not include the terms and we did not title our article “a systematic review.” However, we would be happy to discuss our search terms and ideas we now have for a search strategy that could be used for a systematic review of the literature on health care professionals working as medical educators.
Finally, our experience and that of others is that academic physicians are stretched thin today and are required to spend more time on service and less on education. Therefore, increased use of other professionals for medical education is a reality and confirms that, as Dr. Steinert says, “we are all in this endeavor together.”
Lee Ann Riesenberg PhD, RN
Director, Medical Education Research and Outcomes, Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware, and research assistant professor, Jefferson School of Population Health, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brian W. Little, MD, PhD
Vice president, Academic Affairs and Research, Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware, and assistant dean for affiliations, Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Vaughn Wright, EdD
Education accreditation specialist, Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware.
1Bogdewic SP, Garr D, Miller MC, Myers P. Characteristics and job satisfaction of nonphysician full-time family medicine faculty members. Fam Med. 1994;26:79–84.