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  • Author
    Marisela Aguilar
  • Co-author

  • Title

    Enhancing Existing Medical School Curricula with an Innovative Healthcare Disparities Curriculum

  • Abstract

    Background: Effective healthcare disparities curricula are essential to improve care of minority patients. 

    Methods: A cost-neutral, evidence-based curriculum was created by enhancing established medical school lectures at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine class of 2021 (n=188). Lectures within an 8-week course were evaluated for “teachable moments” or broad topics suitable to introduce specific healthcare disparities content. A lecture-enhancing curriculum based on Society of General Internal Medicine learning objectives was introduced into the DGSOM learning management system via supplemental PDF documents. 

    Results: A total of 92 of 188 students completed curricular assessments and were stratified into intervention group (“utilized materials” n=52) and comparison (“did not utilize the material” n=40) groups based on self-reported use of materials. Minorities were more likely to utilize the material (41% of the intervention group vs 17% of the comparison group, p<.01). Post-course 16-item knowledge composite scores, and confidence in addressing healthcare disparities improved only in the intervention group (p=0.001), and 96% of respondents described the health disparities curriculum as a valuable learning resource. 

    Conclusions: Enhancing pre-existing lectures by identifying and harnessing “teachable moments” is a cost-neutral and effective strategy to integrate a healthcare disparities curriculum.


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