Thursday, August 29, 2013

Milestone Project Signals Major Shift in Psychiatry Training

The Milestone Project is poised to exert a significant impact on current and future psychiatry residents as well as the educators and senior clinicians who are responsible for their training. It is a key element in a move in medical education toward assessing competency via measurement-based outcomes and will be implemented by all U.S. accredited residency programs next July. The project is an outgrowth of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education's six core competencies, which it described in 1999.

"By using the milestones, we can provide better, more specific, and targeted markers for program directors in terms of being able to document that a resident has achieved certain skills," Christopher Thomas, M.D., of the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and chair of the Psychiatry Milestone Group, told Psychiatric News. "It really is a major paradigm shift in how we approach resident education." Added Richard Summers, M.D., chair of the APA Council on Medical Education and Lifelong Learning, "This is an exciting national experiment to see if by defining outcome measures and assessing our residents against those outcomes, we can demonstrably improve resident education." For psychiatry, he said, it helps residency programs think about areas in which they might need to expand such as the ability of psychiatrists to work within systems of care and the application of clinical neuroscience to patient care.

To learn more about the Milestone Project, including a description of what the psychiatry milestones will measure, see the Psychiatric News article, "Milestone Project Called Paradigm Shift in Residency Education." To listen to an audio interview with Thomas and Summers on the Milestone Project, click here.

(image: Auremar/


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