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Lessons in Finding Happiness During Hard Times

By: Sari Harrar
Submitted by: Michael Maury, UC-San Diego

Feeling good may be the last thing on your mind as the coronavirus pandemic grinds into its sixth month in America. As we struggle to revive after arguably one of the world’s worst health and economic calamities, is even talking about happiness self-absorbed and inappropriate?

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‘Implementing Best Practices of Standardized Patient Methodology’ is Available for Preorder

By: Lou Clark, Gayle Gliva-McConvey and Cate Nicholas
Submitted by: Janice Radway, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

SP Educators Gayle Gliva-McConvey, Cate Nicholas and Lou Clark wrote and edited Implementing Best Practices of Standardized Patient Methodology, part of Springer's Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation Series, and now available for preorder with a release date of September 23, 2020. The book was written by SP Educators for SP Educators framed with the ASPE Standards of Best Practices. Fueled by Gliva-McConey's vision and spirit of collaboration, they are joined by 30 U.S. and international chapter authors along with numerous interviews and samples throughout from experts globally in our community of practice.

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Once Upon a Time…the Hero Sheltered in Place

By: Lisa Rosenbaum, M.D.
Submitted by Kathy Herzberger, Loma Linda School of Medicine

I have read so many stories of individuals responding to the call-in places hit hard by COVID. I think how brave and incredible they are for setting aside their lives and jumping into the fray. As a nurse, I often feel I am not doing “enough”. I found this article hit home and addressed some of the emotions I have been struggling with during these unprecedented times.

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A Medical Student Couldn’t Find How Symptoms Look on Darker Skin. He Decided to Publish a Book About It.

By: Sydney Page
Submitted by: Kerensa Peterson, NBOME

“Malone Mukwende, a 20-year-old medical student, found himself repeatedly asking the same question: ‘But what will it look like on darker skin?’

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Using Motivational Interviewing to Address Tobacco Cessation: Two Standardized Patient Cases for Pediatric Residents

Lead author: Rachel Boykan
Submitted by: Todd Lash, The Ohio State University

Motivational interviewing (MI) is a well-established evidence-based method of working with patients to promote health behavior change. Standardized patient (SP) simulation allows trainees to practice and receive feedback on clinical and communication skills and may be useful in applying MI techniques to address tobacco use and exposure. The authors developed two SP cases for pediatric residents to practice addressing tobacco use with parents of their patients.

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In The Spotlight: Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

Submitted By: Howard M. Gregory II
Full Center Name: Skills and Simulation Center – Health Education Campus
Center Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Year Opened: Program 2006; Center 2019
Bragging Points:

  • Just moved into a new center!
  • 20 exam rooms

Learner Groups Supported



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Sawbones: Systemic Racism in Medical Honors

By: Dr. Sydnee McElroy, Justin McElroy
Submitted by: Marsha Harman, Rush Center for Clinical Skills and Simulation, Rush University

AOA is a medical honors society that’s supposed to separate top-tier medical students from the rest of the pack. It helps determine which doctors get the top jobs in the most competitive fields. The problem? There’s implicit racism in the way it chooses members, and fixing it may be a massive challenge.

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The Sorting Hat of Medicine: Why Hufflepuffs Wear Stethoscopes and Slytherins Carry Scalpels

Lead Author: Maria Baimas-George, MD, MPH
Submitted by Kathy Herzberger, Loma Linda School of Medicine

As a fan of Harry Potter, when I saw the title of this article, I just had to read it. If you are familiar with Harry, then you will enjoy this. The authors hypothesize that with each medical specialty often attracting particular personalities, the percentage of residents who self-sorted into the different Hogwarts' houses would vary depending on their chosen specialty.

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A Randomized Controlled Trial of Suicide Prevention Training for Primary Care Providers: A Study Protocol

Lead author: Wendi F. Cross
Submitted by: Todd Lash, The Ohio State University

Background: Suicide is a national public health crisis and a critical patient safety issue. It is the 10th leading cause of death overall and the second leading cause of death among adolescents and young adults (15–34 years old). Research shows 80% of youth who died by suicide saw their primary care provider within the year of their death. It is imperative that primary care providers develop the knowledge and skills to talk with patients about distress and suicidal thoughts, and to assess and respond in the context of the ongoing patient - primary care provider relationship.

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Med Students Face Unsure Future During Pandemic

By: Nicole Lou
Submitted by: Todd Lash, The Ohio State University

Medical schools are preparing students for an uncertain future as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on across the U.S., upending a traditionally rigid cycle of admissions, coursework, and exams. Among the hardest-hit are second-year medical students, many of whom have had their United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) Step 1 exams suspended, according to Paul George, MD, MHPE, associate dean for medical education at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

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Telemedicine Key to US Health Care Even After Pandemic Ends

By: Gopal Ratnam
Submitted by: Janice Radway, University of Pennsylvania

As thousands of patients struck by COVID-19 rushed to seek treatment in overcrowded New York City hospitals, intensive care specialists more than 350 miles away at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center stepped up to provide remote assistance to beleaguered colleagues in New York. Since the public health emergency and the relaxation of rules, the use of telehealth services has exploded across the country, according to the American Telemedicine Association, which represents hospitals, technology companies and others.

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Bringing OSCEs into the 21st Century: Why Internet Access is a Requirement for Assessment Validity

By: George Shand
Submitted by Kathy Herzberger, Loma Linda School of Medicine

This article presents an interesting discussion regarding the development of Open Resource Clinical Assessments (ORCAs). These assessments allow students to utilize internet resources during SP encounters just as physicians do in real practice. Assessing a student’s judgment regarding their choice of resources, interpretation of the information, and their application of this knowledge to the patient’s concern and treatment plan could be valuable in assessing their skill in information management.  

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The Emotional and Behavioral Impact of Delivering Bad News to Virtual Versus Real Standardized Patients: A Pilot Study

Lead Author: S. O’Rourke
Submitted by Kathy Herzberger, Loma Linda School of Medicine

I am personally not a big fan of virtual patients, but the findings in this study have given me pause to rethink my attitude toward virtual vs real patients. Their findings add credence for the use of virtual SPs even when dealing with difficult scenarios such as delivering bad news.

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In The Spotlight: Rush University

Submitted By: Marsha Harman

Full Center Name: Rush Center for Clinical Skills and Simulation

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M Simulation Pivots to Online Delivery to Meet Critical Clinical Training Needs During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By: Jennifer Syltie Johnson
Submitted by: Todd Lash, The Ohio State University

When the University of Minnesota announced on March 12, 2020, that all in-person classes at its five campuses were moving to online learning, it was a first in the University’s history. Campus Public Health Officer and Vice President for Clinical Affairs Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, had announced that all in-person instruction, including clinical rotations, was suspended and moving to alternative instruction a day earlier. On March 13, Tolar’s update included a challenge to colleagues: “Leadership is not measured by meetings or committees,” he wrote. “It is the ability and willingness to stand up to the challenge and deliver a rational, measured, effective response. Over and over again.”

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No Joke: The Serious Role of Improv in Medicine

Author: Sarah Mahoney
Submitted by: Janice Radway, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Ajay Paul Singh, a second-year student at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, felt a little nervous enrolling in a medical improv elective. But he says one exercise alone made the sweaty palms worthwhile.

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Association of Simulated Patient Race/Ethnicity with Scheduling of Primary Care Appointments

Lead Author: Janna M. Wisniewski, PhD; Brigham Walker, MS
Submitted by: Dan Brown, Emory University School of Medicine

This study used seven Simulated Patients belonging to three ethnic groups (self-reported as white, black, Hispanic) to call 804 randomized physician offices to attempt to schedule an appointment. All patients, if asked, would report being uninsured and paying out of pocket. The black and Hispanic patients were asked about their insurance significantly more frequently than the white patients. They also had a longer average wait time until their appointment.

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Belonging, Respectful Inclusion, and Diversity in Medical Education

By: Roberts, Laura
Submitted by Kathy Herzberger, Loma Linda School of Medicine

Laura Roberts, in a well-written piece, reminds us that many of our students, tragically, still face bias, discrimination, microaggressions, and exclusionary practices in medical school. She includes results from the 2019 Medical School Graduate Questionnaire that should make all of us take notice and work hard to help each student we interact with feel respected and valued.

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Nobody Wants to Have End-of-Life Conversations, But...

Lead Author: Christopher Magoon
Submitted by: Janice Radway, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Family members should understand their loved ones’ goals and wishes for treatment in the event of critical illness. The COVID era has heightened the need for these conversations, as initial studies show that intubated COVID-19 patients often do not survive.

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Telemedicine Training Proves Vital During Covid-19 Crisis, Increasing Access to Care

Author: Weill Cornell Medicine, Office of External Affairs
Submitted by: Catherine Hagele, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

The doctor will see you now – virtually.

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