The Impact of Clinician Productivity During Clinical Experiences Across Settings in a Large Academic Medical Center.
Purpose: The purpose of our study was to evaluate the productivity of physical therapist clinical instructors (CI) across both inpatient and outpatient settings during DPT student clinical experiences and compare that to the CI's typical productivity and the overall facility productivity.Methods/Description: Productivity was tracked across all areas of a hospital system in an academic medical center for physical therapists in a retrospective design. Settings within this medical center include acute care, inpatient rehabilitation, outpatient orthopedics, and outpatient neurology. We obtained student data from the Site Coordinators of Clinical Education (SCCE) from each of the settings within the hospital system. We utilized productivity data that is typically collected for all clinicians within the medical center over a 3-year period of time. Weekly productivity was calculated based on an 8-hour day and CIs in each setting were compared to their individual pre- and post-student productivity as well as to the average within their setting. Post-hoc analysis was also completed. IRB approval was obtained.Results/Outcomes: Across all settings within the Academic Medical Center, CI productivity was improved during the student clinical. This was statistically significant in the outpatient orthopedics, outpatient neurologic, and inpatient rehabilitation settings at p <.05. For the acute care setting, the productivity trended up during the student's clinical experience but was not statistically significant. Additionally, CI’s in outpatient who were not currently with students had significantly higher productivity than clinicians in those settings who never took students within the timeframe of our data set.Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme: Our Leadership Landscape: Perspectives from the Ground Level to 30,000 Feet: In a large academic medical center with multiple settings, students had an overall positive effect on the productivity of the clinical instructor. Our results are consistent with recent findings in the acute care setting demonstrating that students have a positive impact on the productivity of the CI. Our study represents the first data published on productivity in other settings in more than 10 years. Although decreased productivity has been commonly communicated as a primary factor for not taking students, we found that students across the medical center usually increased the productivity of the clinic. Opening up educational opportunities in inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation is vital for the success of our profession in order to prepare students for contemporary clinical practice. In conclusion, overall CI productivity is enhanced in all settings during student clinical experiences, especially in the outpatient orthopedic, outpatient neurology, and inpatient neurology settings. As a study limited to one medical center, there is limited in generalizability. Future studies should compare the effects of students on productivity in multiple hospital systems in order to examine this issue more broadly.References: 1. Coulson E, Woeckel D, Copenhaver R, et al. Effects of clinical education on productivity of private practice facilities. J Phys Ther Ed.1991; 5:29–32. 2. Ladyshewsky RK. Enhancing service productivity in acute care inpatient settings using a collaborative clinical education model. Phys Ther. 1995; 75:503-510. 3. Dupont L, Gauthier-Ganon C, Roy RL. 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