Objective: The Thai Medical School Palliative Care Network conducted this study to establish the current state of palliative care education in Thai medical schools.
Methods: A questionnaire survey was given to 2 groups that included final year medical students and instructors in 16 Thai medical schools. The questionnaire covered 4 areas related to palliative care education.
Results: An insufficient proportion of students (defined as fewer than 60%) learned nonpain symptoms control (50.0%), goal setting and care planning (39.0%), teamwork (38.7%), and pain management (32.7%). Both medical students and instructors reflected that palliative care education was important as it helps to improve quality of care and professional competence. The percentage of students confident to provide palliative care services under supervision of their senior, those able to provide services on their own, and those not confident to provide palliative care services were 57.3%, 33.3%, and 9.4%, respectively.
Conclusions: The lack of knowledge in palliative care in students may lower their level of confidence to practice palliative care. In order to prepare students to achieve a basic level of competency in palliative care, each medical school has to carefully put palliative care content into the undergraduate curriculum.
Keywords: medical education; palliative care; situational analysis; undergraduate.