The Naughty Professor
I think a lot of what is wrong with medical education today is simple-- they allow me to teach it. I mean, really... I'm still learning this stuff myself. My sister said it best at a family event back in September. I announced to my mom, sisters and other assorted family members that I would be teaching a component of the first year medicine curriculum starting the following week. There was a brief silence (I supposed people were trying to decide whether to congratulate me or offer me condolences). Then, from my sister: "Well, that's just WRONG".
Then again, my sister is somewhat sensitive about the topic. She's 29 years old and working on a PhD in an interesting but somewhat useless area of study. She's worked for years to teach at the university level. The idea of me waltzing in off the streets just a few months after completing a measly MD must kill her. Heh. I can't really argue with her, though. It IS wrong. These students are paying over $15K a year in tuition fees alone to get taught by someone with barely more experience than they get from watching ER.
Actually, when I volunteered to teach I kind of assumed that there would be some form of mentoring involved. At my med school, clinical skills were taught by a trio of three doctors from different specialties... a great idea cause it gave us a pretty balanced view of medicine. An emerg doc is going to have a very different idea of what should constitute the physical exam than an internist. I figured they'd pair me (the newbie) with a seasoned veteran of medical education who would show me the ropes. Instead, I became the sole educator to a group of seven fresh-faced youngsters (seriously... I think the oldest MIGHT be 22 years old) each with varying degrees of keener-dom. Sigh. Was that ever me? So naive, so trusting...
Ha. These kids have NO idea what they're in for.