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Internal Medicine

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Internal Medicine Clerkship

Syllabus | Course Objectives/Competencies | Expectations | Responsibilities | Heart Sounds | Boot Camp

The greatest commitment of the faculty in the Department of Internal Medicine is towards the students' medical education. The major purpose of this school is to prepare students to become physicians of the highest quality. Kansas has a long and proud tradition of accomplishing this goal. We expect, by the end of the clerkship, that students will demonstrate evidence of acquiring new clinical skills and information.


Students are to learn all about all assigned patients and their problems; they are not held accountable for implementation of patient care. They are expected to know what is happening and to learn why; they are not expected to make it happen. (Elective clerkships for fourth year students may involve execution of patient care under faculty and resident supervision. Such functions may include order writing and other opportunities not routinely available to the students during the third year clerkship.)

Students are expected to make teaching rounds with the university general medicine team daily. They are expected to present their patients during team rounds. Additional teaching faculty and senior resident teaching rounds occur 2-3 times per week.

Third-year students are to complete 1-2 new patient work-ups each week (minimum of 6 per month). Students should be notified of patient assignments promptly regardless of the time of day. The initial student data base form (the history and physical) is returned to the attending faculty member the following morning after admission of the patient. Timely problem-oriented progress notes will be written daily on the assigned patients by the students.


Student Responsibilities for the Internal Medicine Clerkship

The main points of the obligatory clerkship to be emphasized for student education are: a) development of the appropriate values and attitudes, b) collection and verification of a complete data base on all assigned patients, c) beginning interpretation and analysis of data into a meaningful form, d) communication of this data both verbally and written, e) accumulation of the knowledge base of internal medicine. This segment of the student's education is a continued introduction into clinical medicine. While it is more involved and intensive than physical diagnosis and other "pre-clinical" courses, it still must be regarded as introductory.

This introduction is designed to be general and as broad as possible since the students are held responsible for all of the information about each of the assigned patients. It provides an opportunity for the students to interact with, to interview, and to examine patients. It should be regarded primarily and essentially as an experience devoted to learning how to approach, define, and solve the patients' problems. It is preliminary to subsequent endeavors by more advanced students and trainees who will become involved in implementation and execution of patient care.

Although cognitive knowledge of internal medicine is important in itself and critically important to solving patients' problems, we recognize that the breadth and scope of this knowledge base is too large to encompass in an eight-week clerkship. Students' reading will have to be selective. The students need to primarily read about the problems/diseases that their patients have; they need to attempt to integrate what they learn from the textbook with the patients' presentations.

Last modified: Oct 03, 2018