ABSTRACT: Prevention screening and counseling: strategy for integration into medical education and practice.
Providing optimal preventive services across the life span is integral to improving the nation’s health. However, teaching future health professionals evidence-based prevention screening and counseling has notable limitations. Applying the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (Task Force) preventive services recommendations is necessary but not sufficient to teach comprehensive and practical preventive services delivery. Certain important health topics have not yet been investigated by the Task Force; other Task Force health topics have insufficient evidence or nonspecific recommendations. The purpose of the current paper is to provide a strategy and develop a tool to educate future healthcare professionals in recommendations for prevention screening and counseling. Age-specific preventive history charts for children and adults were created using a total of 60 recommendations from the following sources (with number of recommendations shown): the Task Force (n=37); four primary care professional organizations (n=15); and a representative panel of experts (n=8). Using a systematic approach that incorporates other accredited organizations and inclusion criteria (as described) yielded a practical tool that is applicable in both educational and clinical settings.