|June 19, 2017
Is Your Staff Checking BP Correctly?
From the AMA Wire:
At a recent medical conference, 159 medical students volunteered to take part in a blood-pressure check challenge. Individually, students went into a mock exam room where a patient actor sat, legs crossed, on an elevated stool with no arm, back or foot support. An empty chair with support for the patient’s back and arms was next to the stool. A table that could support the patient’s arm properly was adjacent to the stool and an automated BP monitor, a tape measure and small, medium, large and extra-large BP cuffs sat on the table.
The students were told the patient actor was 50 years old, new to the practice and had not seen a doctor in several years, a scenario that calls for health professionals to check blood pressure in both arms. Researchers asked the students to measure the patient’s BP and write down the results. Professional observers evaluated the students in action and passed or failed them on 11 skills.
The results were “disappointing,” study authors said in an article published in The Journal of Clinical Hypertension. Just one student scored 100 percent. On average, students performed 4.1 of the 11 skills correctly. The “Blood Pressure Check Challenge” was held at the 2015 AMA Annual Meeting.
“Given these students represented schools in 37 states, the results suggest it is unlikely that current U.S. medical students are able to perform reliably the skills necessary to measure BP accurately,” the study authors wrote.
(For the rest of the article, follow this link.)
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