Effect of Communications Training on Medical Student Performance

Yedidia, M.J., Gillespie, C.C., Kachur, E., Schwartz, M.D., Ockene, J., Chepaitis, A.E…. & Lipkin, M.
Journal of the American Medical Association, 290 , pp. 1157-1165. [and editorial comment, pp. 1210-1212.]

Although physicians' communication skills have been found to be related to clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction, teaching of communication skills has not been fully integrated into many medical school curricula or adequately evaluated with large-scale controlled trials. This study concluded that communications curricula using an established educational model significantly improved third-year students' overall communications competence as well as their skills in relationship building, organization and time management, patient assessment, and negotiation and shared decision making-tasks that are important to positive patient outcomes.