“Continuity Clinical Experience” Integrates Patient Care, Knowledge for Med Students at Vanderbilt

A couple of years ago, post-graduation surveys of Vanderbilt University medical students revealed that their understanding of the health care system, especially population health management, could be more robust. Bonnie Miller, MD, associate vice chancellor for health affairs and senior associate dean for health sciences education, tasked a team of clinical faculty with this project: to integrate students into clinical teams to care for patients while learning about the larger care-delivery system; and to integrate the patient care experience with medical knowledge. The larger vision was to offer early, active clinical work that would affect the way students learned. The result, the Continuity Clinical Experience (CCX), is a required, four-year longitudinal course launched in fall 2012; participants go “from waiting room to parking lot” with patients. Wing of Zock editor Jennifer Salopek recently sat down with the Vanderbilt team to learn more about the course, which was honored in the AAMC’s Clinical Care Innovation Challenge. An abstract of the project can be found here.