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Kidney Week

Abstract: FR-PO049

The KIDNEE Club: An Acceptability and Feasibility Study of a Preclinical Medical Student Experience in a Pediatric Dialysis Unit Pilot Program

Session Information

  • Educational Research
    November 03, 2023 | Location: Exhibit Hall, Pennsylvania Convention Center
    Abstract Time: 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Category: Educational Research

  • 1000 Educational Research

Authors

  • Couser, Sarah, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
  • Herrmann, Lisa E., Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
  • Hurdle, Robin, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
  • Schuh, Meredith Posner, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Background

Recently, concerns have developed over the sustainability of the pediatric nephrology workforce. Studies indicate that preclinical exposure may impact medical students' interest in field specialization. Seeking to provide early pediatric nephrology exposure to medical students, we implemented an educational intervention to pair preclinical students with pediatric dialysis patients, called the KIDNEE (Kids In Dialysis, Nephrology Exposure and Education) club. We aimed to study the acceptability and feasibility of this pilot intervention for the students, patients, and unit staff.

Methods

For the 2022-23 academic year, seven first year medical students were paired with pediatric dialysis patients. Students met with their “match” once weekly during dialysis sessions. We distributed surveys to participants six months after program implementation to assess feasibility and acceptability of this pilot program. Surveys, based on a previously published Likert scale tool assessing student and parent impression of a preclinical exposure program, were iteratively revised after review by medical education experts. Surveys were distributed via REDCap to the medical students, staff, and patients/families who participated in the program.

Results

From October 2022-April 2023, the 7 medical students spent ~173 hours in the dialysis unit. All (100%) students, 8 of 24 (33%) dialysis staff, and 2 of 7 (28%) patients/families responded to the survey. Students reported increased interest in caring for children with kidney disease after participation in the KIDNEE Club. Staff and parents unanimously reported students were helpful to patients and played an important role in patient’s overall happiness. They all reported that they would recommend the KIDNEE club to other families. One parent reported that the program “improved my child's mood and maybe made it easier for the necessary care to take place because he was more cooperative/motivated.”

Conclusion

Preliminary data suggests the KIDNEE club pilot was both feasible and acceptable for students, staff, and patients/families. As our results are limited by small sample size given the pilot nature of the program, future study is needed with program expansion and longitudinal assessment of the impact on students’ career trajectories.