Clerkship Goals & General Objectives
The overall goal of the Psychiatry Clerkship is the mastery of basic core competencies that are essential for practice as a competent physician, regardless of career focus.
Upon completion of the six-week Psychiatry Clerkship, the student will be able to provide compassionate, effective patient care reflecting the ability to:
- Collect an accurate, thorough database in a timely manner and with utmost comfort to the patient. The database should include:
- a comprehensive psychiatric history and physical examination,
- the identification of psychosocial stressors,
- a thorough mental status examination,
- laboratory testing,
- psychological testing, when indicated, and
- a family interview.
- Analyze and synthesize data using the biopsychosocial model to generate a relevant differential diagnosis according to DSM-5.
- Formulate an initial interdisciplinary treatment plan to include further diagnostic evaluation and patient management strategy.
- Discuss diagnosis and treatment with the patient and/or family.
Upon completion of the clerkship the student will demonstrate knowledge of:
- Signs and symptoms of psychiatric disorders including psychosomatic, organic and substance abuse disorders.
- Biological and psychological testing available and their indications.
- Biological, sociological and psychological theories of etiology.
- Treatment strategies including pharmacotherapy, psychotherapy, electroconvulsive therapy and social interventions.
- Interdisciplinary team approach to patient care.
- Criteria for recognition of the suicidal or homicidal patient.
Develop interpersonal & communication skills
Upon completion of the clerkship, the student will demonstrate development in the following areas in relation to interpersonal and communication skills:
- Clear, respectful communication with patients, family members and health care providers.
- Use of active listening and empathic, appropriate non-verbal skills in patient interviews.
- Written documentation of patient encounters that is relevant, organized and legible.
- Oral presentation of patient encounters that is logical and organized.
- Establishment of an effective physician/patient relationship.
Commitment to professionalism
The student will demonstrate a commitment to professionalism through the development of a set of attitudes and values that reflect:
- A doctor/patient relationship built on a basic acceptance of and concern for the patient with a non-judgmental approach.
- Appropriate behavior and conduct during patient and staff encounters.
- Appropriate appearance and demeanor.
- The importance of monitoring one’s own emotional responses to the patient and maintaining objectivity in all professional contacts.
- The need for reliability, responsibility and confidentiality as it relates to all patient contacts and duties.
- A commitment to ethical principles as they relate to patient care.
- An awareness of one’s own strengths and limitations and a willingness to incorporate constructive feedback into practice.
Continual Assessment & Evaluation
Upon completion of the clerkship, the student will demonstrate an awareness and appreciation of the importance of continual assessment and evaluation of patient care practices as evidenced by:
- The use of information technology to further educate and alter patient care practices.
- Knowledge of the design, methods and evidence used in scientific studies.
- The use of critically analyzed, population-based evidence to improve patient care practices.
- The development of patterns of self-directed lifelong learning.
Systems issues that impact psychiatric care
Upon completion of the clerkship, the student will demonstrate knowledge of systems issues that impact psychiatric care as evidenced by:
- An awareness of socioeconomic barriers to care and how to optimize a patient’s access to appropriate treatment.
- Participation in a multidisciplinary team approach to patient care.
- Recognition of system complexities and how they affect the delivery of health care.
- Efforts to provide high quality care at reasonable cost to patients.