Oregon Health & Science University reaps benefits of curriculum changes

In 2013, the American Medical Association rewarded 11 medical schools — including Portland-based Oregon Health & Science University — with $1 million grants to improve their curriculum over five years, and OHSU is already reaping the benefits, according to The Oregonian.

The curriculum revamping was much-needed. "They were clamoring," said George Mejicano, MD, associate dean for education at OHSU, in reference to both patients and employers.

With the help of the AMA's grant, the medical school completely refurbished its curriculum. Medical students now have the opportunity to practice medical test runs on dummies in the school's "simulation center." To enhance their soft skills, they work with actors posing as patients. They even get the chance to provide OHSU administration with feedback on the lessons.

According to the report, Dr. Mejicano described OHSU's new curriculum in three words: "Sooner, faster, better."

The results of the changes are positive, with the vast majority of OHSU students passing the first step of the United States Medical Licensing Examination. "Ninety-eight percent of students passed so far," said Dr. Mejicano, according to the report.

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