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Palliative care education in Swiss undergraduate medical curricula: a case of too little, too early

Pereira, J.
Cantin, B.
Gudat, H.
Zaugg, K.
Eychmuller, S.
Published in Palliative Medicine. 2008, vol. 22, no. 6, p. 730-735
Abstract Palliative medicine education is an important strategy in ensuring that the needs of terminally ill patients are met. A review was conducted in 2007 of the undergraduate curricula of all five of Switzerland's medical schools to identify their palliative care-related content and characteristics. The average number of mandatory hours of palliative care education is 10.2 h (median 8 h; range 0-27 h), significantly short of the 40 h recommended by the European Palliative Care Association's Education Expert Group. The median time allocated to designated palliative care blocks is 3 h (range 0-8 h). Most of the education occurs before the clinical years, and there are no mandatory clinical rotations. Three schools offer optional clinical rotations but these are poorly attended (<10% of students). Although a number of domains are covered, ethics-related content predominates; 21 of a total of 51 obligatory hours (41%). Communication related to palliative care is largely limited to 'breaking bad news'. In two of the schools, the teaching is done primarily by palliative care physicians and nurses (70% or more of the teaching). In the others, it is done mostly by educators in other clinical specialties and ethics (approximately 90% of the teaching). These findings show significant deficiencies.
Keywords Curriculum/*standardsEducation, Medical, Undergraduate/organization & administration/*standardsHumans*Palliative CareSchools, Medical/organization & administration/standardsSwitzerland
PMID: 18715972
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Other version: http://pmj.sagepub.com/content/22/6/730.full.pdf
Research group Médecine palliative (709)
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PEREIRA, J. et al. Palliative care education in Swiss undergraduate medical curricula: a case of too little, too early. In: Palliative Medicine, 2008, vol. 22, n° 6, p. 730-735. doi: 10.1177/0269216308094560 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:19201

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Deposited on : 2012-03-27

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