Workshop on Graduate Medical Education Outcomes and Metrics

Type: Stand Alone Workshop
Topics: Education, Health Care Workforce, Public Health
Board: Board on Health Care Services

Activity Description

Graduate medical education (GME) is critical to the career development of individual physicians, to the functioning of many teaching institutions, and to the production of our physician workforce. The 2014 IOM report, titled Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation's Health Needs, offered recommendations intended to strengthen GME, but also highlighted concerns about the paucity of outcomes data. The current lack of established GME outcome measures limits our ability to assess the impact of individual graduates, the performance of GME programs and teaching institutions, and the collective contribution of GME graduates to the physician workforce. 

Recent reports have called for substantial reform of GME. However, concerns about GME are difficult to address without reliable, systematic data. Much of GME is based on tradition, regulatory requirements, and hospitals' care delivery needs, rather than on evidence of effective education. If national outcomes data were available, large-scale observational studies could generate hypotheses for further research. Systematic data collection and analysis is essential for improving the quality and efficiency of physician training, which is a key element in improving the health of our nation.

Defining and implementing GME outcomes measures necessitates careful consideration about which outcomes are relevant. Clarification about what is actually measurable (now or in the foreseeable future) is also critical. In addition, the methods for data collection and analysis will need to be considered, along with who should be responsible for tracking outcomes and with whom the data should be shared. The expanding use of health IT and availability of "big data" could facilitate large-scale tracking of outcomes measures, including opportunities to build on seminal work relating a physician's impact to his/her GME.

Participants in this public workshop will discuss:

  • Meaningful and measurable outcomes of GME
  • Possible metrics that could be used to track these outcomes
  • Possible mechanisms for collecting, collating, analyzing and reporting this data 
  • Further work to accomplish this ambitious goal

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