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November 1983

Will the Deans of the Medical Schools and the Chairmen of Departments of Medicine, Please Stand Up!

Author Affiliations

Department of Medicine Northwestern Memorial Hospital 250 E Superior St Chicago, IL 60611

Arch Intern Med. 1983;143(11):2064-2065. doi:10.1001/archinte.1983.00350110042011

The clinical education of medical students has been moving away from the bedside. We have drifted from the exciting and successful Oslerian concepts of bedside teaching, with the visible functioning of the scholarly physician, to an educational process that often inadequately teaches biomedical science and which frequently fails in teaching clinical skills and humane patient-oriented performance. We must be grateful to Eichna,1,2 who has assessed important aspects of medical education with wisdom and offers some imaginative and sensible solutions. Moser3,4 and others have helped focus some of the problems, and recently Landau,5 from an institution with a long tradition of having only full-time salaried physicians, expressed his dismay at our failure in teaching clinical medicine.

It is impossible to define easily the complex problems in medical education, but we need to acknowledge our frequent failure to educate students to function as capable clinicians. This failure must be