Objective: To determine perceptions held by patients of the involvement of medical students in their obstetrics and gynaecology health care.
Study design: This study evaluated patients' perceptions of medical students involved in their care at a tertiary women's hospital. A questionnaire was used to collect patients' perceptions of the student's professional skills, their attitude to and level of comfort in the patient and student interaction.
Results: Ninety-five percent of patients approached participated in this study. Results demonstrated a high level of patient satisfaction with student involvement in care. Most patients believed students should be part of the hospital team and were prepared to have a student involved in the future. Satisfaction levels were higher for patients for whom English was their first language, women under 40 years of age and those receiving care in assessment and in-patient settings. Patient comfort in student participation was greater for those seen by a female student and those who had previously had a student involved in their care or previously attended the hospital.
Conclusion: Patient perceptions of students' involvement in their obstetrics and gynaecology care are mainly positive. Satisfaction levels differ with the gender of the student, the age of the patient, the location of care and for those for whom English is their first language. Attention must be paid to informing patients of the presence and possible level of interaction of students in their care.
© 2011 The Authors. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology © 2011 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.