Andrew Parsons, MD

Andrew Parsons, MD

By Andrew Parsons, MD

Launched in 2018 by UVA School of Medicine, the Foundations of Clinical Medicine (FCM) program is a novel ( 4-year long curriculum focused on clinical skill development and professional identity formation. The program has had continued success and growing hospitalist involvement, despite the COVID-19 pandemic constraints. The time students spend in FCM creates their foundation as a physician. Within the UVA School of Medicine curriculum, morning lectures concern themselves primarily with basic science knowledge. The practice of medicine—both the science and the art in all of its subtleties—is the focus of FCM.

FCM-1, the first 18 months of the larger FCM program, aims to develop history taking, relationship building, physical examination, differential diagnosis, and clinical reasoning skills. In early spring 2020, FCM-1 rapidly converted to a virtual clinical skills curriculum utilizing Zoom to conduct small group, case-based exercises along with standardized patients and virtual patient laboratories. This fall, thanks to the hard work of many who were focused on providing a safe, effective learning environment, FCM-1 resumed in-person classes for physical exam teaching and hospitalized patient interviews. Summative exams for the course, known as Observed Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs), have been converted to a virtual format. Due to all involved’s creativity and flexibility, the FCM program has had another successful year despite the inherent challenges of social distancing.

This success is due, in large part, to the hospitalists who serve as physician coaches: Becky Kenner, MD; Ben Sneed, MD; Chris Moore, MD; Rahul Mehta, MD; Glenn Moulder, MD; Greg Young, MD; and Andrew Parsons, MD, MPH who also directs the Pre-clerkship Coaching Program and the FCM-1 course. This past year, we were thrilled to have Usmaan Bashir, MD, join the coaching ranks. Janaki Patel, MD; Ian Crane, MD; David Fink, MD; and Ryan Wiggins, MD serve as substitute coaches.

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