MedEdQR was designed to improve student medical knowledge and clinical skills acquisition when used in virtual or standardized patient engagements. Through the use of unobtrusive smart mobile devices, MedEdQR puts a mini EMR-like system in a student’s hands for anytime / any place on-demand access to rich patient information as constructed by program faculty.
MedEdQR promotes student learning regardless of learning context. It is equally effective in the classroom, during OSCE engagements, in clinical exercises, medical knowledge assessments, and self-study and/or remedial exercises. MedEdQR supports the assessment of student clinical reasoning through the platform’s ability to track student information requests as they explore case content.
MedEdQR is particularly effective in introducing students to “Doctor Think;” the manner by which physicians arrive at diagnoses, and how the personality of the physician, the patient, and the interaction between the two can affect the diagnosis and treatment. “Doctor Think” is an engagement process – a collaborative, intensive and iterative process best done within a clinical and/or diagnostic exercise.
MedEdQR supports the AMA’s core “Entrustable Professional Activities” (EPAs), a set of guidelines medical school graduates should be able to perform on the first day of residency. Adopted by the AAMC, it supports these guidelines by providing a simple to use tool to more fully engage students as they build EPA competency in the three areas of medical education, namely, Medical Knowledge, Clinical Skills and Professionalism.
Smart Mobile Devices App + Web App
MedEdQR consists of two components, a web-based application used to manage medical cases, users, smart devices and media, and a mobile device (smartphone / tablet) application used to access the case information on the fly. What is truly unique about MedEdQR is that it uses the mobile device to scan QR codes (see example to the left) to return medical case information such as patient history, heart/lung sounds, radiology images, EKG waveforms, physical exams results, lab panels, profiles, and lab test results.
MedEdQR is not intended to be an EHR or EMR system, yet it emulates features of such systems that are important in creating EPAs. When used in case-based and clinical skills exercises, it can further enhance the collaborative diagnosis and treatment learning process, particularly in the pre-clinical years. It is not limited to in-class usage, though. It can be used for individual or group remedial work, for OSCE style assessment, to create inexpensive simulation manikins, and more.
What About the QR Codes?
All the QR codes used in MedEdQR are generic, regardless of the case. There are a number of types of codes: codes that represent high level aggregations such as Case Pages or Case Media, codes that represent specific physical exams such as Vital Signs or specific lab test profiles or panels, and codes that represent a specific exam result such as “Blood Pressure” or the level of “Sodium” in an Ions and trace metals & minerals Lab Test Profile. See the example Code Booklet pages to the left to see codes for the examples listed above. There is also the ability to print a “case specific” booklet that contains only those codes that are apropos to the case.
The use of QR codes is not limited to cases whose content is fully within the MedEdQR system. Case Builders can also embed codes in their paper-based cases, in websites, in their favorite LMS system. They can be attached to Standardized Patients or simulation manikins by using codes printed on sticky-backed paper, or sent to students via email during a classroom or assessment engagement. No booklet needed.
From the user perspective, the workflow is always the same regardless of how the case is deployed. Using their smart mobile device, users log into the case, scan a code, get the results, add personal notes, and continue their case exploration whether individually or in group collaboration.
Some Features of MedEdQR
The MedEdQR platform provides Case Builders a broad palette of features and options in how cases are constructed, managed, shared, and deployed. For example, there are a number of ways to manage version control; cases can be cloned and then revised or cases can be revised in-place. Cases can also be constructed based on educational needs such as cases oriented toward early medical education (highly guided cases) versus non-guided cases created for pre-clerkship clinical engagements. One can also expect that cases targeted toward self-study might be structured very differently from those destined to be used in an assessment or in-class. MedEdQR not only supports face-to-face engagements, but also self-study, remedial work, assessment, and even e-learning through case assignment. Cases can be assigned to groups or to individual users, can be hidden from use until some appropriate time, have its user/content interactions tracked for clinical reasoning analysis, or have the release of case content sequenced. By using a combination of assignment options, it is possible to use a single case for multiple purposes – assigned to an individual student for remedial work with neither sequencing or tracking enabled, and simultaneously assigned to a group of in-class students whose interactions with case content are tracked.
Users and Groups along with the cases themselves, make up the triad of connections that provide a means of controlled case deployment. Users are added or imported into the department then associated with one or more groups. Cases are associated with groups or individuals, with each association controlled by a set of options that might keep the case or group hidden until an appropriate time.