ABSTRACT: Impact of a brief addiction medicine training experience on knowledge self-assessment among medical learners
Implementation of evidence-based approaches to the treatment of various substance use disorders is needed to tackle the existing epidemic of substance use and related harms. Most clinicians, however, lack knowledge and practical experience with these approaches. Given this deficit, the authors examined the impact of an inpatient elective in addiction medicine amongst medical trainees on addiction-related knowledge and medical management.
Trainees who completed an elective with a hospital-based Addiction Medicine Consult Team (AMCT) in Vancouver, Canada, from May 2015 to May 2016, completed a 9-item self-evaluation scale before and immediately after the elective.
A total of 48 participants completed both pre and post AMCT elective surveys. On average, participants were 28 years old (interquartile range [IQR] = 27-29) and contributed 20 days (IQR = 13-27) of clinical service. Knowledge of addiction medicine increased significantly post elective (mean difference [MD] = 8.63, standard deviation [SD] = 18.44; P = .002). The most and the least improved areas of knowledge were relapse prevention and substance use screening, respectively.
Completion of a clinical elective with a hospital-based AMCT appears to improve medical trainees’ addiction-related knowledge. Further evaluation and expansion of addiction medicine education is warranted to develop the next generation of skilled addiction care providers.