Medical EducationOriginal Article

Perceived Importance of Pursuing Osteopathic Recognition in the Single Accreditation System: A Survey of Medical Students, Residents, and Faculty

Kari Hortos, DO; William Corser, PhD; Brandy Church, MA; Jonathan Rohrer, PhD, D Min; and Kirsten Waarala, DO
Notes and Affiliations
Notes and Affiliations

Received: March 21, 2017

Accepted: April 18, 2017

Published: October 1, 2017

J Osteopath Med; 117(10): 651-659

Context: As graduate medical education evolves under the single accreditation system, osteopathic residency programs and consortia strive for sustainable ways to achieve and support the Osteopathic Recognition (OR) designation.

Objectives: To determine whether differences existed in perceived importance of OR from 3 cohorts of osteopathic stakeholders: students, residents, and faculty.

Methods: A nonexperimental quantitative cross-sectional online survey was administered during February and March 2016 to osteopathic medical students at Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine and residents and faculty from the affiliated Statewide Campus System. After examining final working dataset patterns, a series of Kruskal-Wallis tests were conducted to identify statistically significant differences in perceived OR importance response categories across sample subgroups, including program specialty and primary vs non–primary care specialty.

Results: The final analytic sample comprised 278 osteopathic medical students, 359 residents, and 94 faculty members. Of 728 respondents, 497 (67.9%) indicated that OR was “somewhat important,” “important,” or “very important.” The overall perceived importance category patterns varied significantly across students, residents, and faculty cohort respondents (, P<.001) and program specialty (, P<.001), as well as between primary care and non–primary care residents and faculty (, P<.001).

Conclusions: Based on these initial results, OR is generally valued across osteopathic stakeholder groups, but significant differences may exist between different types of students, residents, and faculty. Pre- and postgraduate educational support structures designed to reduce barriers to OR implementation may help to sustain osteopathic principles and practice in the single accreditation system.

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