Survey of palliative care concepts among medical interns in India

Parag Bharadwaj, M. S. Vidyasagar, Anjali Kakria, U. A. Tanvir Alam

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Abstract

Background: Medical knowledge, if theoretical, will fade away if not reinforced especially if not clinically implemented. We conducted a survey study amongst interns to assess awareness and confidence of common palliative care issues. Undergraduate medical education in India is a 4 1/2-year course. This is followed by a 1-year internship before the new physician can practice independently. Aim: To compare the level of awareness in palliative care concepts among interns to that of final-year medical students at Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, India. Materials and Methods: Forty-four interns participated in a survey study. The data were collected after the survey and the responses were analyzed. We compared these data with those obtained from conducting the same survey among medical students. Results: The reported theoretical knowledge of palliative care concepts was better than the level of confidence in performing practical aspects of palliative care. The interns, overall, did not outperform the students. Conclusion: Before this survey, we hypothesized that interns in India would have low levels of self-reported understanding of palliative care and its components. We were hoping to see an improvement in knowledge and confidence with training. In contrast, there was not much of an improvement but rather a decline in some areas. From this, we conclude that when medical students become interns, they need reinforcement of knowledge and more hands-on experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)654-657
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Palliative Medicine
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01-06-2007

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nursing(all)
  • Medicine(all)
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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