Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Community immersion project to enhance medical students understanding of the health needs of the most vulnerable in the community
  1. Fathima Rawther1,
  2. Sophie Bondje1,
  3. Anisah Rahman1,
  4. Adelaide Duku1,
  5. Selani Gooneratne1,
  6. Matthew Beck1,
  7. Surajdeep Ubhi1,
  8. Christina Gleeson2,
  9. Bharathy Kumaravel1,
  10. Joanne Harris1
  1. 1Medical School, Milton Keynes University Hospital, Milton Keynes, UK
  2. 2Health Protection, Milton Keynes Council, Milton Keynes, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Fathima Rawther, Medical School, Milton Keynes University Hospital, Milton Keynes MK6 5LD, UK; frawther{at}yahoo.com

Abstract

AIM: A group of eight fourth year medical students formed the ‘UBMS public health crew’ to conduct a community immersion project within elderly ethnic minority communities. The aim of the study was to understand their health perceptions regarding influenza vaccinations and learn about the enablers and barriers in accessing the vaccination.

METHODOLOGY: Interviews were held by the students at community lunch clubs with the help of questionnaires.

RESULTS: 76 people participated in the focus groups of which 56.5% were Asians and 43% were Irish. Feedback was sought from the students in the form of an online survey.

CONCLUSION: This project helped the medical students improve their public health knowledge, gave them an opportunity to interact with members of the community and learn about the health and social problems faced by underserved/vulnerable communities. The students were also able to appreciate the cultural, sociodemographic and psychological determinants of health in an underserved community. Providing such community immersion projects can enable future doctors to be better prepared for care closer to the community and have better insight into patient-centred care.

RESULTS: 76 people participated in the focus groups of which 56.5% were Asians and 43% were Irish. Feedback was sought from the students in the form of an online survey. this project helped the medical students improve their public health knowledge, gave them an opportunity to interact with members of the community and learn about the health and social problems faced by underserved/vulnerable communities. The students were also able to appreciate the cultural, sociodemographic and psychological determinants of health in an underserved community. Providing such community immersion projects can enable future doctors to be better prepared for care closer to the community and have better insight into patient-centred care.

METHODS: Interviews were held by the students at community lunch clubs with the help of questionnaires. 76 people participated in the focus groups of which 56.5% were Asians and 43% were Irish. Feedback was sought from the students in the form of an online survey which found that this project helped the medical students improve their public health knowledge, gave them an opportunity to interact with members of the community and learn about the health and social problems faced by underserved/vulnerable communities. The students were also able to appreciate the cultural, sociodemographic and psychological determinants of health in an underserved community. Providing such community immersion projects can enable future doctors to be better prepared for care closer to the community and have better insight into patient-centred care.

AIM: A group of eight fourth year medical students formed the ‘UBMS public health crew’ to conduct a community immersion project within elderly ethnic minority communities. The aim of the study was to understand their health perceptions regarding influenza vaccinations and learn about the enablers and barriers in accessing the vaccination. Interviews were held by the students at community lunch clubs with the help of questionnaires. 76 people participated in the focus groups of which 56.5% were Asians and 43% were Irish. Feedback was sought from the students in the form of an online survey which found that this project helped the medical students improve their public health knowledge, gave them an opportunity to interact with members of the community and learn about the health and social problems faced by underserved/vulnerable communities. The students were also able to appreciate the cultural, sociodemographic and psychological determinants of health in an underserved community. Providing such community immersion projects can enable future doctors to be better prepared for care closer to the community and have better insight into patient-centred care.

  • medical leadership
  • medical student
  • patient experience
  • project design
  • public health

Statistics from Altmetric.com

Footnotes

  • Contributors FR, primary author, contributed to conception of idea, performed data collection, data analysis and interpretation. SB, primary author, contributed to conception of idea, performed data collection, data analysis and interpretation. AR performed data collection, data analysis and interepretation, providing feedback on experience. AD performed data collection, data analysis and interpretation, providing feedback on experience. SG performed data collection, data analysis and interpretation, providing feedback on experience. MB performed data collection, data analysis and interpretation, providing feedback on experience. SU performed data collection, provided stylistic/grammatical reveisions to manuscript, providing feedback on experience. CG conception of idea, provided access to research components, data analysis and interpretation. BK, principal supervisor of project, contributed to conception of idea, data analysis and interpretation, provided revisions to scientific/grammatical/stylistic content of manuscript. JH, advisor, provided revision to scientific/grammatical/stylistic content of manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The study received ethical approval from the University of Buckingham School of Science and Medicine Ethics Committee.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.