How Medical Education is Changing
The American Medical Association (AMA) wants to change medical education with $11 million
in grant money. It aims to close the gaps between medical training and health care delivery with
grant-funded experiments throughout the United States. According to reports, the effort is
starting to bear fruit.
The AMA awarded $1 million each to 11 medical schools to form the “Accelerating Change in
Medical Education” consortium. The grants will fund creative ways to prepare students for
medical careers in the future. From big data to self-paced learning, medical education is
transforming the way future doctors are trained.
Health Data Analysis
The effort to improve medical education is driven by the need for competent health professionals
who can meet current and future health care demands. With all the changes in health care and
technology, learning to analyze data is more important than ever. Not only can it improve
community-wide health, but it can also help individual patients. The New York University
(NYU) School of Medicine uses the AMA grant to teach students to find better uses for health
Self-Paced Medical Education
Self-paced learning is another change in medical education in 2015. The Oregon Health and
Science University (OHSU) uses AMA grant funds to develop a competency-based curriculum.
The old curriculum was a “time fixed” model — 2 years of basic science and 2 years of clinical
science. With this model, some students were not ready for the next step and others were held
back. A self-paced program can meet the need of various students, from former nurses to Army
medics to students with no medical background.
Dual Degree Programs
At Brown University, some medical students are pursuing a dual degree: a Doctor of Medicine
(MD) and a master’s degree in population medicine. The master’s program is integrated across
all four years of medical school. Because America’s health care system is evolving rapidly,
doctors today must know more than they needed to know 10 or even 5 years ago. Brown
University uses AMA funds to focus on basic and clinical science as well as the science of health
Together, the “Accelerated Change in Medical Education” consortium is creating the medical
education of the future. While the journey is not without challenges, it is also exciting to
reimagine education from the ground up. Through collaboration and innovation, these schools
are creating doctors who can meet the health care demands of the 21st century.
Dr. Gil Lederman is a medical doctor and a certified oncologist from NYC.