Mitchell, A. ; Paul, Tomlin J. ; La Grenade, Janet A.; McCaw-Binns, Affette M. ; Williams-Green, Pauline
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Department of Community Health and Psychiatry
Assumptions About Disease Treatment Challenged in a Family Health Clerkship: Views of First Clinical Year Medical Students
Education Health (Abingdon)
Date of Publication
OBJECTIVE: To determine the main assumptions related to disease treatment, which students have had to re-think after engaging in this clerkship. METHODS: End of clerkship assessments were carried out from two successive groups of third year medical students (n=64) at the University of West Indies, Jamaica. Students were asked to 'list two assumptions regarding treating disease that have been challenged by your experience'. A subsequent content analysis was done. RESULTS: Fifty-five students (86%) completed the assessment. All assumptions were listed (n=99) and similar issues were linked into emerging themes. Twenty-five groups of assumptions produced seven main themes: 'Issues related to compliance' (27.3%),'Patient's treatment is mainly physical' (17.2%), ' Superiority of western medicine over alternative' (15.2%), 'Patients' health seeking behavior and attitudes' (12.1%), ' The extent of the contribution of social factors on health' (12.1%) and 'Patients' knowledge and understanding of health' (7.0%). CONCLUSION: The majority of students examined felt challenged on three themes: relating to issues of compliance, treating the 'whole' patient not just the physical, and the superiority of western medicine over alternative. The three most popular individual assumptions were; patients have a mindset that favours compliance, medication affordability does not affect compliance and treatment is independent of social and environmental conditions.....