ERIC Number: EJ812996
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Swedish Medical Students' Views of the Changing Professional Role of Medical Doctors and the Organisation of Health Care
Holmstrom, Inger; Sanner, Margareta A.
Advances in Health Sciences Education, v9 n1 p5-14 Mar 2004
Medical students will influence future health care considerably. Their professional orientation while at medical school will be related to their future professional development. Therefore, it is important to study this group's view of the role of medical doctors, especially because Swedish health care is currently undergoing major changes and financial cut backs. Here, the theoretical framework was contemporary theories of competence development, which has shown that people's understanding of their work influences their actions. The aim of this study was to describe medical students' views of their future professional role in health care. In total, 57 fourth-year medical students at a Swedish university were asked to write a short essay about how they conceptualised their professional role in future health care. Fifty-three students (93%) replied. The essays were analysed qualitatively in three steps and four themes were subsequently identified: the professional role in change, organisation of health care, working conditions and the possibilities of having a balanced life. Some factors mentioned that would strongly influence the professional role were being team leader, increased specialisation, supporting the patient and computer science and technology. The students expressed ambiguous feelings about power and leadership. The results indicate that the students share a rather dark view of both the medical profession and health care, which seems to be related to stress and financial cutbacks. Mentoring, time for reflection and changes in the curricula might be needed.
Descriptors: Medical Education, Medical Students, Medical Schools, Computer Science, Physician Patient Relationship, Student Attitudes, Foreign Countries, Professional Development, Role Perception, Essays, Specialization, Power Structure, Leadership, Health Services, Mentors
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Sweden