“Future doctors will be better,” said Lourdes Lledó, dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Alcalá, and Jesús Millán, professor and head of internal medicine at Gregorio Marañón.
The experts attended the virtual meeting of Crossed Arguments, promoted by the Chair of Medical Education Lilly-UCM Foundation, where they analyzed the challenges and opportunities of medical education in the current scenario.
“After the pandemic our faculty is already different, just like students, faculty and specialists will be different. And they will get better“, Explained Professor Millán.
In his view, the pandemic has had a tragic part of an almost epic, heroic response, with many victims, “but it has helped identify the importance of medicine in many students.”
This is how Lledó manifested himself. “Crises, no matter how terrible, motivate society to innovate to overcome this situation. The lessons will make students better doctors and specialists ”.
When the pandemic broke out, the student body went into shock and had to adapt to online teaching. “We experienced it as a dramatic moment because all the students disappeared from the faculties, hospitals and health centers,” Lledó explained.
The situation created uncertainty for a few days, not only among students but also among teachers and researchers. “Not knowing what to do dominated,” the dean admitted.
Values for future doctors
It was never easy for Professor Millán to be a doctor, let alone in times of pandemic. “This has benefited education, not only in knowledge of the students but also in values.”
For, as they agreed to point out, the students experienced altruism, generosity and devotion, teamwork of all toilets. “It was a wonderful practical class.”
The losses they may have suffered by not being able to go to the classrooms, according to Millán, will more than compensate. “They will return to practical activities with all sorts of safety precautions.”
During the critical months, the relationship between students and teachers was a close collaboration. “The students organized, but we could not decide on practical aspects”acknowledged the dean.
“There are sixth graders who lost their practical training, but they felt absolutely companions and part of the profession,” Lledó stressed.
In his opinion, the fact that they called up MiR and that they had to enter the “centers, was a great learning for them”, although he expressed his doubts that some specialties have won with the exception of emergencies.
Theoretical and virtual education
Millán also considered that virtual theoretical education should be improved. “The challenge ahead is to optimize online teaching; you have to go to the university crown ”.
In the same way, he emphasized it at the meeting The pandemic has shown the benefits of luggage space; “The interdisciplinary teams that have been at the forefront of the fight against the virus have shown it.”
Lledó said it was time to reform the MIR degree. “You have to reflect on the type of test, because maybe you have to incorporate other aspects like empathy.”
The dean was more powerful when he pointed out that in March and April the faculties were not prepared for online teaching, ”they lacked tools and the resources were not good ”.
In that regard, he explained that universities in recent months have taken steps to provide them with exceptional funding for online education, “which will never replace face-to-face teaching.”
Without equity in the faculties
For Lledó, there will be a trend towards double training, “towards mixed teaching models, much better prepared than at present: in an exhibition there are no problems, these arise with doubt”, he admitted.
The professor and the dean also agreed on the lack of justice in the faculties. “The pandemic has made it clear. We must move towards cross-cutting learning ”.
As Millán pointed out, “virtual education has its risks; Let us not slow down and see and talk less with patients, base diagnoses on laboratory tests and put them in the hands of technicians ”.
They do not consider the possibility that sixth grade medical students, in this course, may not be able to do the exercises. “It is unknown what will happen, but we do not believe that the rotation of these students is interrupted,” they explained.
The two experts were optimistic about the start of the course and expressed their confidence in both the students and the younger teachers. “The future profession and training of doctors are in good hands “Sa Millán.
For Lledó, doctors take on challenges. “We must have strength, enthusiasm, innovation; be realistic, but adapt to the situation. This will be achieved with optimism, enthusiasm and cooperation “, he added.