Stony Brook University Uses AHRQ's TeamSTEPPS®, Other AHRQ Tools for Physician Assistant Program
Stony Brook University's Health Sciences Center in New York uses three of AHRQ's evidence-based products and data resources to train graduate-level physician assistants, including:
- TeamSTEPPS® patient safety training program that encourages teamwork among health professionals to achieve the best possible clinical outcomes.
- Effective Health Care Program (EHC) publications, which summarize the benefits and risks of treatment options for numerous health conditions.
- Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) Statistical Briefs, descriptive reports that highlight hospital data related to a variety of health care issues.
"The [AHRQ] information is very practical and useful information for our students," said Peter D. Kuemmel, M.S., clinical associate professor and chair of Stony Brook’s Department of Physician Assistant Education.
TeamSTEPPS, an evidence-based patient safety system developed by AHRQ and the Department of Defense, is used by Stony Brook as part of an interdisciplinary geriatrics course. About 70 students take the course each year, learning TeamSTEPPS principles such as situation monitoring, empowering medical staff to express concerns about a patient’s care, and periodic "huddles" to discuss a patient's condition.
"TeamSTEPPS opened the students' eyes" to the importance of practicing team-based care and recognizing the importance of good communication, Mr. Kuemmel said.
"Because the students represent different disciplines such as physician assistant, social work, and nurse practitioner, TeamSTEPPS helps them learn to function together effectively to develop solutions for managing complex care," Mr. Kuemmel said.
The geriatrics course also uses AHRQ's EHC Program materials as training tools, such as the EHC research summary, Nonsurgical Treatments for Urinary Incontinence in Adult Women: Diagnosis and Comparative Effectiveness. AHRQ funds the development of EHC research summaries that compare the effectiveness of different treatment options for a broad range of health topics.
"The EHC information is integrated throughout the entire course. The materials are good informational tools that enable students to explore various patient health issues and understand what to watch for in terms of different types of health conditions," Mr. Kuemmel said.
AHRQ's HCUP Statistical Briefs are short, focused reports on specific topics and are used at Stony Brook for a graduate course on research design in evidence-based medicine. One example is Overview of Emergency Department Visits in the United States, 2011, which provides statistics on conditions treated in emergency departments and visit characteristics. HCUP is the nation's most comprehensive source of hospital data, including information on inpatient care, ambulatory care, and emergency department visits. HCUP enables researchers, insurers, policymakers and others to study health care delivery and patient outcomes over time, and at the national, regional, state, and community levels.
"The [AHRQ] information is very practical and useful information for our students," Mr. Kuemmel concluded.