A rigorous evaluation of an institutionally-based communication skills program for post-graduate oncology trainees Journal Article


Authors: Bylund, C. L.; Banerjee, S. C.; Bialer, P. A.; Manna, R.; Levin, T. T.; Parker, P. A.; Schofield, E.; Li, Y.; Bartell, A.; Chou, A.; Hichenberg, S. A.; Dickler, M.; Kissane, D. W.
Article Title: A rigorous evaluation of an institutionally-based communication skills program for post-graduate oncology trainees
Abstract: Objective: Integrating education about physician-patient communication into oncology specialists’ education is important to improve quality of care. Our aim was to rigorously evaluate a 4-year institutionally-based patient communication skills program for oncology post-graduate trainees. Methods: Trainees from 10 specialties in the U.S. participated in patient communication skills modules tailored to sub-specialties. The program was evaluated by comparing pre-post scores on hierarchical outcomes: course evaluation, self-confidence, skills uptake in standardized and real patient encounters, and patient evaluations of satisfaction with communication. We examined breadth of skill usage as key outcome. Generalized estimating equations were used in data analysis. Results: Two hundred and sixty-two trainees’ data were analyzed, resulting in 984 standardized and 753 real patient encounters. Participants reported high satisfaction and demonstrated significant skill growth with standardized patients, but transfer of these skills into real patient encounters was incomplete. Participants with lower baseline scores had larger improvements with both standardized and real patients. Conclusion: The program was well received and increased participant skills in the simulated setting without effective transfer to real patient encounters. Practice Implications: Future work should allocate proportionally greater resources to trainees with lower baseline scores and measure breadth of participant skill usage as an outcome. © 2018 Elsevier B.V.
Keywords: adult; patient satisfaction; united states; oncology; simulation; doctor patient relation; data analysis; communication skills training; communication skill; interpersonal communication; experiential learning; professional competence; education program; normal human; cancer communication; self esteem; course evaluation; postgraduate education; patient simulation; graduate medical education; human; male; female; priority journal; article; physician-patient relationship
Journal Title: Patient Education and Counseling
Volume: 101
Issue: 11
ISSN: 0738-3991
Publisher: Elsevier Ireland Ltd.  
Date Published: 2018-11-01
Start Page: 1924
End Page: 1933
Language: English
DOI: 10.1016/j.pec.2018.05.026
PUBMED: 29880404
PROVIDER: scopus
DOI/URL:
Notes: Article -- Export Date: 1 November 2018 -- Source: Scopus
Altmetric Score
MSK Authors
  1. Yuelin Li
    136 Li
  2. Philip A Bialer
    38 Bialer
  3. Maura N Dickler
    234 Dickler
  4. Alexander Ja-Ho Chou
    55 Chou
  5. Tomer T Levin
    58 Levin
  6. David W Kissane
    160 Kissane
  7. Abraham Bartell
    12 Bartell
  8. Ruth Danielle Jozef Manna
    18 Manna
  9. Patricia Ann Parker
    25 Parker