Training residents in medical informatics

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23 Scopus citations


Background and Objectives: A number of medical educators have called for an increased emphasis on medical informatics training, but few family practice residency programs have provided more than cursory teaching efforts in this area. This paper provides an overview of approaches to medical informatics education that have been implemented with some success by 'pioneer' programs. A comprehensive review of the literature reveals many promising teaching applications of informatics tools, such as palmtop computing devices, e-mail, decision support software, and videoconferencing. However, barriers to the advancement of informatics training in residency remain, including low rates of computer ownership and use among residents, a lack of information regarding faculty computer skills, and lack of collaboration among programs teaching informatics. Based on the literature review and tempered by expert recommendations, an eight-step process for developing or refining a family medicine informatics curriculum is proposed: 1) conduct a needs assessment, 2) review expert recommendations, 3) enlist faculty and local institutional support, 4) espouse a human-centered approach, 5) integrate informatics training into the larger curriculum, 6) provide easy access to computers, 7) provide practical training, and 8) measure and report educational outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)465-472
Number of pages8
JournalFamily Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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