eCite Digital Repository

Expanding capacity for supervision in general practice through student-engaged clinical audit


Mauldon, E and Radford, J and Todd, A, Expanding capacity for supervision in general practice through student-engaged clinical audit, Quality in Primary Care, 22, (1) pp. 35-41. ISSN 1479-1072 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Radcliffe Publishing

Official URL:


Background: Expanding clinical teaching opportunities is essential for securing a sustainable health workforce. Although Tasmanian general practitioners GPs are keen to provide learning opportunities for medical students, they have identifed time pressures due to a need to meet patient service demand and a need for more guidance on effective clinical teaching, as factors impacting their ability to increase clinical supervision. By developing a clinical audit activity, we delivered an educational resource that did not require direct GP supervision yet provided meaningful learning outcomes for students. Through systematically reviewing patient records it was hoped that students would strengthen practicebased quality improvement activities, thus 'giving back' to their placement practice.

Methods: A clinical audit curriculum was developed for fourth-year medical students at the Launceston Clinical School (n = 46) and implemented during their general practice rotation. This included a lecture and tutorial, and structured activities based on an audit of diabetes care. Preparation and support was provided to GP supervisors and practice staff through ongoing practice visits conducted by school academics. Implementation of the curriculum within general practice was evaluated through focus groups conducted with staff from five training practices (n = 29). Evaluation of student experiences is ongoing.

Results: This paper reports on the experiences of general practice supervisors and other practice staff. GPs and practice staff responded positively, indieating that the syllabus provided novel teaching opportunities and a modest contribution to improving patient records and patient care. Major learning opportunities identified included the development of skills working with patient records and practice software, and understanding the importance of accurate and reliable medical records for the optimal delivery of patient care.

Conclusions: Conducting clinical audit provides students with novel learning opportunities while also strengthening the capacity of teaching general practices to provide clinical placements. Students learnt about the importance of monitoring professional practice using systematic clinical audit, and the complexities of managing patients within primary care. In so doing, they enhanced the robustness and rigor of patient records within their placement practice.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:clinical audit, general practice, preceptorship, professional education, quality improvement
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Primary health care
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Teaching and curriculum
Objective Field:Assessment, development and evaluation of curriculum
UTAS Author:Mauldon, E (Dr Emily Mauldon)
UTAS Author:Radford, J (Professor Jan Radford)
UTAS Author:Todd, A (Mrs Anne Todd)
ID Code:96281
Year Published:2014
Deposited By:Medicine
Deposited On:2014-10-29
Last Modified:2018-02-09

Repository Staff Only: item control page