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Family Medicine & Community Health Elective Course Description

Course Name: Quality and Patient Safety
Course Number: FC-448
Elective Type:

Emmanuel Maduakor, M.D. &
Judy Savageau, MPH

Department: Quality and Patient Safety (EM)
Family Medicine and Community Health (JS)
Sites Available: UMass Chan - University Campus
Months Offered: E1, E2, M3-M5, M8-M10
(No M1, M2 or M7) 
Number of Students / Month: 2
Prerequisites: Offered to UMass Students Only

Elective Description: The elective is designed for students looking for a hands-on introduction to medical quality improvement and patient safety. It is open to all 4th year students, but limited to two students per month.

Learning objectives include:

  • Understanding basic principles of medical QI and patient safety, building on related material presented in previous curriculum;
  • Building skills to identify problems and inefficiencies and see them as opportunities for process improvement and change;
  • Using tools to effect change, including Lean and PDSA; and
  • Learning how a multidisciplinary team can address a needed improvement.

The elective includes required readings from the quality and patient safety literature and required use of online educational resources (specifically “IHI Open School” modules).

Based on availability and interest, opportunities for involvement and training in major UMMMC quality improvement initiatives will be offered. Options of possible elective focus areas include: patient-centered care, clinical effectiveness, patient safety, and health care efficiency. While the student is expected to choose a focus area, it is also possible to combine focus areas – depending on the availability of mentors during the month-long elective. For these and other focus areas, students will have an opportunity to attend related QI committee meetings, Quality Grand Rounds presentations, and Quality Scholars learning sessions that occur during the elective. Additionally, the elective may include connections with key UMMMC Lean, patient-centered care/Planetree, Risk Management, and Patient Representative programs/departments.

Each student will have an identified mentor for the month-long experience based on his/her focused area of interest. With guidance, each student will coordinate (or be integrated into) a focused quality improvement project or continue a project in process.

Note: * Offered to Umass Students Only
Location: UMass Chan - University Campus, 55 Lake Avenue North, Worcester, MA 01655
Website: Department of Family Medicine & Community Health