Laboratory Medicine/Clinical Pathology

Sites: BIDMC
Director(s): Katharyn Atkins, Richard Haspel, Kerry O'Brien
Prerequisites: HMS Principal Clinical Experience (Core Clinical Clerkships) or equivalent
Offered: Full time every month. Not offered in July.
Location: BIDMCE - BI-Deaconess Med Ctr-East (1)
Open to Exclerks: US/Canadian
Description: This clerkship is a month long elective designed to expose medical students to the discipline of laboratory medicine. Regardless of intended specialty, a deeper understanding of laboratory testing will provide a very useful foundation for future patient care. Medical students will spend time in each of the four major clinical laboratories (blood bank, microbiology, chemistry, and hematology). Through discussion with the course directors prior to the start of the rotation, a schedule will be tailored to the medical student´┐Żs interests and aspirations. Students, along with technologists, residents, fellows and attendings, will become part of clinical pathology team in each laboratory. They will spend time at the bench observing and/or performing testing (e.g., bacterial culture, antibody identification in the blood bank) and participate in daily laboratory rounds where clinical, methodology, management, and quality assurance issues are discussed. They will also participate in the laboratory specific didactic/tutorial sessions and be given directed readings to help build an adequate knowledge base. In addition, students will attend laboratory specific interdisciplinary conferences where they may present select material (e.g., microbiology plate rounds to the infectious disease fellows and attendings). Students will be expected to give at least one presentation at our weekly laboratory medicine case conference during the third or fourth week of their rotation. The presentation will be approximately 15 minutes in length and focus on a case that occurred during the rotation with a discussion on management and pertinent laboratory medicine issues. The relevant attending will advise the student on choice of topic and presentation. Note: Drs. Richard L. Haspel and James Kirby are co-directors for the course.
Incorporation of Basic Science Content and Evidence-Based Medicine:
Clinical pathologists are at the forefront on translating basic research testing methodologies or stem cell technologies from the bench to the clinic. Medical students taking this elective will be exposed to this aspect of the specialty through introduction to emerging methodologies. Evidence-based clinical pathology is practiced at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Medical students will be guided in reviewing the literature to determine the best course of action for clinical issues that arise on-service.
Grade Criteria:
Honors with Distinction: Enthusiastically participates in rounds, completes required reading as is well prepared for didactic sessions. The student also takes the initiative in assisting the laboratory medicine team with issues that arise on-service. Outstanding presentation at the Laboratory Medicine Case Conference. Honors: Enthusiastically participates in rounds, completes required readings and is well-prepared for didactic sessions. Very good presentation at the Laboratory Medicine Case Conference. Satisfactory: Participates in rounds, completes required readings and is well-prepared for didactic sessions. Satisfactory presentation at the Laboratory Medicine Case Conference. Unsatisfactory: Does not participate in rounds, does not complete required readings and is not prepared for didactic sessions. Poor presentation at the Laboratory Medicine Case Conference.