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Poster Numbers 294 – 318 – Ethics, education & communication: Poster No: 297
A unique approach to teaching palliative care
  1. Ruth Ting,
  2. Maria McKenna,
  3. Hannah Gunn,
  4. Leena Srivastava and
  5. Susan Pennington
  1. Northern Deanery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK


Background Peer and near-peer teaching is now a recognised approach in medical undergraduate education with increasing evidence to support its efficacy.

Aims (1) To establish a teaching day delivered by palliative care trainees for doctors-in-training in other specialties. (2) To show that trainees in palliative medicine are effective near-peer and peer-led tutors. (3) To demonstrate impact of teaching day on learners' knowledge and confidence.

Methods A programme was designed to cover core palliative care topics contained within the curricula of other specialties. Participants completed a pre and postcourse questionnaire of clinical scenarios to survey their knowledge and confidence; and a satisfaction questionnaire.

Results Thirty-five doctors attended the teaching day. Confidence and knowledge ratings increased at the end of the teaching day. Results of the satisfaction survey were overwhelmingly positive.

Limitations This cohort was not fully representative of all doctors in training.

Discussion This study does not determine whether there is sustained impact on knowledge and confidence of participants; this could be assessed in future teaching programmes using the same confidence and knowledge questionnaire 8 weeks postcourse. Participants' knowledge and perceived confidence in a learning environment may not translate into clinical ability.

Conclusion A teaching day delivered by palliative care trainees for other doctors-in-training, is achievable and positively received. Feedback showed trainees are effective and approachable tutors. There was a demonstrable positive impact on knowledge and confidence immediately following the teaching day. This method of teaching enables both teachers and participants to achieve curriculum objectives. Further research is required to further explore whether peer and near peer teaching is more acceptable and effective than consultant teaching and reasons why this may be so.

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