Evidence-Based Medicine at the Intersection of Research Interests between Academic Health Sciences Librarians and Medical Educators: A Review of the Literature ...

By Dorsch, Josephine L.; Perry, Gerald (Jerry | Journal of the Medical Library Association, October 2012 | Go to article overview

Evidence-Based Medicine at the Intersection of Research Interests between Academic Health Sciences Librarians and Medical Educators: A Review of the Literature ...


Dorsch, Josephine L., Perry, Gerald (Jerry, Journal of the Medical Library Association


Objectives: In 2008, the Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries established an Education Research Task Force (ERTF) to plan research addressing research priorities outlined in key Association of American Medical Colleges reports. ERTF members conducted a literature review to describe the state of collaborative research at the intersection of medical education and health sciences librarianship. Analysis of initial results revealed instruction in evidence-based medicine (EBM) was a shared interest and is thus the focus of this review.

Methods: Searches on EBM teaching programs were conducted, and results were posted to a shared online citation management service. Individual articles were assessed and assigned metadata describing subject matter, scope, and format.

Results: Article analysis identified key themes. Most papers were descriptive narratives of curricular development. Evaluation studies were also prominent and often based on student satisfaction or selfreported competency. A smaller number of controlled studies provide evidence of impacts of librarian involvement in EBM instruction.

Conclusions: Scholarship of EBM instruction is of common interest between medical educators and health sciences librarians. Coauthorship between the groups and distribution of literature points to a productive collaboration. An emerging literature of controlled studies measuring the impact of crossdisciplinary efforts signals continued progress in the arena of EBM instruction.

INTRODUCTION

In late 2002, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) established the Institute for Improving Medical Education (IIME) to encourage and foster improvements in medical education. An ad hoc committee was established to direct the efforts of the institute, with the intention of conducting a comprehensive review of the state of medical education and making recommendations for reform. In 2004, the committee released its report and recommendations, Educating Doctors to Provide High Quality Medical Care: A Vision for Medical Education in the United States [1]. The report presented a series of strategies for reforming medical education and achieving an ''Ideal Medical Education System.'' The AAMC's Group on Educational Affairs (GEA) was invited to respond to the report with ideas for advancing its various recommendations. In 2006, the GEA issued its response in a report, Implementing the Vision: Group on Educational Affairs Responds to the IIME Dean's Committee Report: Educating Doctors to Provide High- Quality Medical Care: A Vision for Medical Education in the United States [2].

The GEA's response considered what was working well in medical education and what needed attention. Among the areas identified for improvement were increased integration across the continuum of medical education; recognition (academic and financial) of educators; and more ''rational assessment'' across the continuum. The GEA report identified areas for future research in parallel to the areas of concern expressed in the IIME report. The GEA also articulated the knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential for the successful transition of learners throughout the medical education continuum, among them skills in accessing information, understanding and using evidence-based medicine (EBM), self-directed learning, self-assessment, and reflection.

Among the suggested areas for future research and the acknowledged lifelong learning skills expressed in the report were many of potential interest to the biomedical information and library sciences community. Health information professionals are in fact actively engaged in the full complement of teaching programs on their respective campuses or sponsored by their institutions, with a focus on the acquisition and application of informatics and knowledge management skills.

The IIME and GEA reports identified four key agendas in order to achieve the proposed ''Ideal Medical Education System'':

* promote a patient-centered approach to medical care,

* ensure that doctors are capable of providing highquality medical care,

* improve the efficiency of educational processes, and

* improve the effectiveness of the education processes. …

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