Minutes 10.10.13

Minutes 10.10.13

University of Virginia School of Medicine
Curriculum Committee
Minutes – 10/10/13

Pediatric Conference Room, 4:00 p.m.

Present (underlined) were: Gretchen Arnold, Stephen Borowitz, Megan Bray, Donna ChenPeter Ham, Donald Innes (Chair), Sean Jackson,  Keith Littlewood, Nancy McDaniel,  Bart Nathan,  Sabrina Nunez,  Theresa Schlager,  Neeral Shah, Amita Sudhir,  Linda Waggoner-Fountain, Casey White,  Bill WilsonMary Kate Worden, Yasmin Pourkazemi,  Jean-Baptiste Maitre, Tom JenkinsLee Eschenroeder, Brian Wakefield,  Debra Reed (secretary)


  1. Announcements:

    The Curriculum Committee welcomes Lee Eschenroeder and Brian Wakefield, the newly elected SMEC representatives who will be a part of the Curriculum Committee.

    Eugene McGahren, Surgery Clerkship Co-director, received the Jefferson Scholars Foundation for his outstanding teaching efforts.

    Thomas Gampper, Surgery Subspecialties Director and a former member of this committee, received the 2013 Master Educator Award for Graduate Medical Education.

    Anneke T. Schroen, Surgery Clerkship Co-Director, received the 2013 Dean’s award for Excellence in Teaching.

    The committee acknowledges the hard work and dedication to medical education of these award winners.

  2. 2013-2014 Teaching Awards.  The deadline for submission of nominees for these awards is February 3, 2014.  The Committee is encouraged to nominate fellow faculty for these awards.  Information on submission is available at:


    It is important to follow (submission) formats carefully; nominations that do not adhere to the exact requirements will be penalized.  Details will be posted on the TRC website under:


    Please note that this year there will be a new, required format for the student evaluation data.

  3. Thread Report on Immunology/Microbiology and Infectious Disease.  Dr. Ulrike Lorenz, thread leader for Immunology/Microbiology and Christopher Moore, thread leader for Infectious Disease, submitted report for the threads.  The Committee reviewed and discussed the reports.  The Committee will ask that these threads be further integrated into the NxGen Systems.  While the Microbes System covers the basic information, students would benefit greatly from system specific microbiology/immunology/infectious disease information being reintroduced during each system.  The Committee agreed that much of the information from these threads would likely be more relevant and make a greater impact on student education if connections were clearly made during each system.  This information could be introduced into the systems using case studies that should include pharmacology content as well.

    It was suggested that perhaps Microbes become slightly shorter course to allow more time in the systems to focus on system specific Microbes information.  Students on the Committee agreed that further integration of these threads into the curriculum systems would be extremely beneficial. 

    It was also suggested that perhaps a one-week Microbes review after the students have completed all systems might be beneficial as well.   At that point students familiar with the systems, i.e. cardiac, pulmonary etc. would be better able to understand the ramifications of the various infectious disease principles in each discipline. 

    Dr. Ulrike Lorenz would like to step down as Microbiology/Immunology Thread Leader.  She nominated Dr. Jay Brown to fill this position beginning January 1, 2014.  The Committee agreed to the change.  Dr. Brown is encouraged to work more closely with each system leader to further develop and enhance this thread in all the systems, clerkships and even some electives.

    Dr. Chris Moore is working on determining when/where/how the ID thread is covered throughout the entire Curriculum.  He is encouraged to continue his work as outlined in his report and asked to further enhance the Infectious Disease thread, especially in the systems.

  4. Evaluating Students Knowledge of SpecificThreads in the Curriculum.   The Committee briefly discussed how it might be possible to code questions on formative and summative examinations to allow a report on how students are doing on specific threads, i.e. pharmacology, microbiology, pathology, physiology, medicine, surgery, pediatrics, anatomy.  The committee was asked to consider how best to track this information.  Questions could be coded to offer subset evaluations of student performance on individual threads.   The Committee should consider whether it is preferable to determine  “minimum competency” as in the national board exams or “degrees of excellence.”    Questions related to multiple threads could be coded to reflect this.  The ability to put key words into the system now is in place, however, getting the statistical data based on the code words will need to be developed.     Sean Jackson will look into how this might be accomplished.    It was noted that keywords would need to be standardized – perhaps USMLE topic codes might be utilized.

  5. Clerkship Grade Report.    The Committee reviewed a report of the dates clerkship grades were submitted in the last quarter.  Most clerkships complied with the five week post clerkship submission deadline.    A few clerkships were late submitting grades but were sill able to stay within the six week post-clerkship period required by the LCME.  Megan Bray, OBGYN Clerkship Director, noted that sometimes when students have a week long break after the clerkship it is difficult to get them to complete their part of the evaluation process in a timely fashion, thus delaying grade submission.

  6. Oasis Performance.  Clerkship Directors, Peter Ham, Bill Wilson and Megan Bray noted that the Oasis system seems to have slowed down considerably of  late.  The lag time between writing notes and continuing to the next screen seem to have become much longer.  Sean Jackson will look at this issue and report back to the committee.

  7. Medical Student Duty Hours.  A report from the Medical Student Advocacy Committee (MSAC) noted that students in multiple clerkships report noncompliance with the student duty hours policy.

    The policy is posted on the web at: http://www.med-ed.virginia.edu/handbook/policy/attendance.cfm

    Medical students rotating on clinical services (clerkships, selectives and electives) should be subject to the same principles that govern the 80-hour work week for mid-level residents (a maximum of 80 hours of required clinical duties per week averaged over a four week period, no more than 24 consecutive on duty hours with at least 10 hours off between shifts, and on average one day in seven free from all required clinical duties). Four additional hours for the handover of patients (no new patients) after 24 hours is allowed for feedback on clinical decisions and for continuity. Clerkship, electives and selectives directors are responsible for monitoring and ensuring that duty hours are adjusted as necessary. Student duty hours should be set taking into account the effects of fatigue and sleep deprivation on learning and patient care. In general, medical students should not be required to work longer hours than mid-level residents*. (Curriculum Committee 9/9/2004; modified 04/14/2011)

    Donna Chen, a member of the MSAC explained the report to the group.  When students click “yes” to a question on their clerkship/elective evaluation that asks whether duty hours were exceeded during the rotation, a report is generated.  If further explanation is provided, those comments are always forwarded to the clerkship/elective director.  If no comment is provided the Advocacy Committee looks for trends (i.e. multiple infractions from the same rotation).  It appears that most of the infractions are confined to the ACE, selective, or surgery experiences with few trends noted.  The policy is explained to the students during clerkship orientation and will be further stressed during next year’s orientation.  ACE supervisors will be reminded of the policy by e-mail. The Committee will ask that Nancy McDaniel reiterate the policy to the clerkship directors at the upcoming Joint Clerkship Directors meeting on 10/23/13. The Curriculum Committee will review this report from the Student Advocacy quarterly.  The Committee will consider development of an “enforcement” policy


Donald J. Innes, Jr., M.D.
Debra Reed