Introduction: This 12-15 minute performance-based assessment is designed in the format of an OSCE and measures student’s clinical competency in taking a comprehensive geriatrics medication history. This assessment is intended for students who have received instruction on how to take a medication history with older patients and who have some clinical experience allowing them to practice this skill. Methods: Students are asked to interview a simulated patient (SP) regarding their medications and to make appropriate recommendations for problems identified. The SP brings to the assessment a brown bag including all their prescription medications. A faculty rater observing the interview completes a performance checklist which includes individual items as well as two global ratings of performance. Results: We have successfully implemented this OSCE with the entire class of MS3 students (N = 168) in the spring of 2009 during our annual OSCE weekend. As rated by faculty, 73.8% of students at least met expectations for collecting accurate medication histories, and 79.3% of students at least met expectations for delivering an effective analysis, synthesis, and set of recommendations. Discussion: Although this OSCE is designed primarily as a summative assessment tool and is used at our institution at the end of the third year of training, the format allows the activity to be easily adapted into a formative assessment tool.
- Take a medication history and to gather information regarding the patient’s understanding of their medications, and problems and factors influencing adherence.
- Outline a patient plan with steps that can be taken to reduce medication problems and obstacles to adherence.
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