The Center for Patient Partnerships received a President’s Grant from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, one of the oldest and most innovative health professions education foundations in the United States. The grant will fund Dr. Rachel Grob, MA, PhD and Dr. Nancy Pandhi, MD, MPH, PhD, in their generation and pilot testing of curriculum with Dr. David Deci, MD, for third-year medical students’ use of the first DIPEx module, which focuses on young adults’ experiences with depression.
There is broad consensus among the advocacy community that incorporating patient experience more thoroughly into health professions education would provide real value in teaching both cognitive and affective skills, in addition to a potential impact on motivation. There are three significant barriers to this: cost, logistics, and representativeness. The first two—high cost and logistical headaches—are primarily incurred in the coordination, recruitment, and compensation of patient “guests.” The third involves the challenge of having one patient describe his or her experience, and leaving students to assume the experience is representative of a broader populations’.
The US DIPEx (Database of Individual Patient Experiences) website—healthexperiencesusa.org, a collaboration based at the UW-Madison—seeks to solve this problem. Modeled after a methodology pioneered at Oxford University (healthtalk.org), healthexperiencesusa.org will launch its first module on July 19th.
Each module studies a particular illness by intentionally seeking out people in different situations with different kinds of experiences for in-depth, in-person interviews that are video or audio recorded at the subject’s home or in a community setting, as they prefer. Data from each study is analyzed and presented as a web-based module, with clips of patients speaking in their own voices, using their own words, to illustrate their experiences. The Macy grant allows CPP to start to learn how best to incorporate these modules into health professions’ education.