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Development of communication skill teaching module in pharmacology added with faculty sensitization in undergraduate MBBS students

Sonai Mandal, Swanand Pathak, Tamoghna Maiti, Olivia Mukhopadhyay.


Background: Good communication skills have been recognized as an indispensable component of physician-training effecting patient compliance and health outcomes in a positive way. The National Medical Council has recently introduced modules for Attitude, Ethics, and Communication skills training in a phased manner. An idea for a faculty sensitization program for pharmacology faculties on developing communication skills as part of their faculty development will enhance module implementation and provide opportunities for learners’ growth through constructive feedback.

Aims and Objectives: The aim of the study was development of communication skill teaching module in pharmacology for phase 2 students with following objectives: (i) To develop a communication skill teaching module and (ii) To determine the effectiveness of the module on learning of phase 2 students in BSMC.

Materials and Methods: After ethical clearance, the development of instructional activities for communication skill development followed through ADDIE model, one of the best-known models for developing instructional designs. ADDIE is an acronym for Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluate. Pre-test questionnaire were introduced followed by Kalamazoo consensus statement addressing 7 key elements of physician communication as an assessment of their basic understanding to communication skill. In a successive focus group discussion with the faculties, suggestions were invited for refining of communication skill module. Feedback and post-test questionnaires were received from students and faculties at the end of 8 h session to improvise in the module.

Results: A paired sample t-test was conducted to determine the effect of communication skill training on the Kalamazoo consensus statement score of 30 students. The result indicated a significant difference between the score before training (M = 21.43; standard deviation [SD] = 5.764) and the score after training (M = 75.43; SD = 6.078). The 95% confidence interval of the difference between the means ranged from 51.17 to 56.83 and indicated a statistically significant difference between the mean with a P < 0.0001. Paired t-test was also conducted between the pre-test scores and the post-test scores of the 200 students. The result indicated a statistically significant difference having a P < 0.0001 with 95% confidence interval ranging from 2.063 to 2.457.

Conclusion: Like any other skill effective communication skills can be acquired with conscious efforts in day-to-day practice. Faculty development program formed an integral part of all the teaching-learning activities of communication skill development training.

Key words: Competency-Based Medical Education; Communication; Ethics; Faculty Sensitization; Module

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