SRF059: The Development of a Virtual Student-Led Disaster Preparedness and Disparities Elective

Deborah Oyedapo, BS; Victoria Udezi, MD, MPH; Nora Gimpel, MD; Jack McDaniel


Context: Natural and manmade disasters can significantly increase morbidity and mortality rates in populations by way of injuries, illnesses and trauma. Vulnerable populations are more likely to face serious consequences. Though disasters pose a threat to public health, only a third of AAMC accredited medical schools offer disaster medicine training. The impacts on human health and degree of societal disruption caused by the current COVID-19 pandemic are overt examples of how this educational gap in disaster preparedness can be a disadvantage. With appropriate training, medical students can be equipped to respond to disasters and the disparities within their communities that are amplified when they occur. These skills are particularly advantageous for those who decide on primary care specialties as they will be uniquely positioned to address multiple social determinants of health.
Objective: To develop, implement and evaluate a medical student-led, two-week family medicine virtual elective on disaster preparedness and the disparities in disaster response.
Human Subjects Review: N/A
Design: Mixed method qualitative and quantitative study
Setting: UT Southwestern Medical Center (Virtual Learning Platform)
Patients or Other Participants: 5 enrolled medical students and 13 auditing students.
Intervention/Instrument: Peer-led two-week virtual elective with faculty facilitators. Daily sessions covered topics recommended by the AAMC and American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) for disaster training.
Main and Secondary Outcome Measures: Elective pre- and post-test scores, Incident Command System (ICS-100) assessment, and anonymous self-reporting surveys.
Preliminary Results: The average pre-test score assessing knowledge of class material was 65.3 (SD ± 6.1) and the average post-test score was 83.3 (SD ± 7.5) on a scale of 100. Mean difference of 18 (p < 0.01, 95% CI 10.5-25.5). The student responses on surveys are still being collected and evaluated. Four enrolled medical students who completed the survey stated they would recommend the elective to peers.
Conclusions: Preliminary findings demonstrate an increase in student knowledge, on disaster related topics, that can potentially be achieved by incorporating this virtual peer-led elective in medical student education. Student comments from surveys will be used to improve the elective’s content and delivery, as well as make it sustainable for future medical training.

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Jack 11/21/2020

great project. thanks

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