Researchers find culture of academic institution may influence health care delivery

Feb 03, 2009

Researchers at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Brandeis University have completed a qualitative study on the cultural environment in medical schools and how this may affect medical faculty vitality, professionalism and general productivity ultimately influencing the delivery of health care. This study appeared in the January issue of Academic Medicine.

"As we interviewed faculty in academic medicine, it became clear that many faculty felt isolated and lacked support in their work. This may inadvertently be creating an environment that negates the importance of interpersonal relationships between medical practitioners and their patients," explains senior author Phyllis Carr, MD, professor of medicine and associate dean of students at Boston University School of Medicine.

A central task of medical schools is to help students, faculty and medical practitioners form caring, healing relationships with patients, their communities and each other. In medical education, effective relationship formation and trust is pivotal in learning and is helpful for interdisciplinary clinical partnerships and multidisciplinary research collaboration.

The qualitative study was conducted in five US medical schools representing the diverse organizational characteristics of the 126 medical schools in the US. Participants included research scientists, medical and surgical subspecialists and generalist medical faculty who hold doctorate degrees and represented a wide diversity of subspecialties. Of the 170 faculty members invited 96 participated in the study. These individuals were categorized into four different career stages. 1. early career; those who had been faculty members for two to five years; 2. plateaued, those who had not advanced as expected in rank and responsibility and who had been faculty members for 10 or more years; 3. faculty in leadership roles such as deans, department chairs and center directors and 4. former faculty who have left academic medicine.

The study found that serious problems exist in the relational culture affecting medical faculty vitality, professionalism, and general productivity, and are linked to retention. According to Carr, greater efforts need to be made to support faculty and create a climate of trust in medical academe.

Source: Boston University

Explore further: Continued reliance on Windows XP in physician practices may threaten data security

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Gene removal could have implications beyond plant science

11 hours ago

(Phys.org) —For thousands of years humans have been tinkering with plant genetics, even when they didn't realize that is what they were doing, in an effort to make stronger, healthier crops that endured climates better, ...

The science of anatomy is undergoing a revival

Apr 10, 2014

Only two decades ago, when I was starting my PhD studies at the University of California in Berkeley, there was talk about the death of anatomy as a research subject. That hasn't happened. Instead the science ...

Recommended for you

What are the chances that your dad isn't your dad?

11 hours ago

How confident are you that the man you call dad is really your biological father? If you believe some of the most commonly-quoted figures, you could be forgiven for not being very confident at all. But how ...

New technology that is revealing the science of chewing

Apr 15, 2014

CSIRO's 3D mastication modelling, demonstrated for the first time in Melbourne today, is starting to provide researchers with new understanding of how to reduce salt, sugar and fat in food products, as well ...

After skin cancer, removable model replaces real ear

Apr 11, 2014

(HealthDay)—During his 10-year struggle with basal cell carcinoma, Henry Fiorentini emerged minus his right ear, and minus the hearing that goes with it. The good news: Today, the 56-year-old IT programmer ...

Italy scraps ban on donor-assisted reproduction

Apr 09, 2014

Italy's Constitutional Court on Wednesday struck down a Catholic Church-backed ban against assisted reproduction with sperm or egg donors that has forced thousands of sterile couples to seek help abroad.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Down's chromosome cause genome-wide disruption

The extra copy of Chromosome 21 that causes Down's syndrome throws a spanner into the workings of all the other chromosomes as well, said a study published Wednesday that surprised its authors.

Ebola virus in Africa outbreak is a new strain

The Ebola virus that has killed scores of people in Guinea this year is a new strain—evidence that the disease did not spread there from outbreaks in some other African nations, scientists report.

Freight train industry to miss safety deadline

The U.S. freight railroad industry says only one-fifth of its track will be equipped with mandatory safety technology to prevent most collisions and derailments by the deadline set by Congress.