195755 Student attitudes and knowledge about aging patients: A one year cohort report

Monday, November 9, 2009: 8:30 AM

Lisa Z. Killinger, DC , Director of Diagnosis & Radiology, Palmer College of Chiropractic, Davenport, IA
David Reed, PhD , Iowa Geriatric Education Center, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
Through the Iowa Geriatric Education Center, a course in Healthy Aging is offered to chiropractic students. This course is assessed each term related to the effectiveness of this educational model in enhancing student knowledge and attitudes towards caring for aging patients. While successes related to this course were reported by Hawk, et. al, from pilot tests of the ‘model course', this project will assess the demographic make up and results of pre and post tests of 3 classes of students (a total of 350 students) in the academic year 2007-08. The tools used in this assessment were the Palmore Facts on Aging (PFOA) Quiz and Aging Semantics Differential. Interestingly the Pre- assessments on aging knowledge indicated that our chiropractic students had slightly better knowledge scores on the PFOA than the normative data for medical students in geriatrics. In this cohort, students' scores on the knowledge test (Palmore) improved significantly after the 30 hour course, by an average of 4 points out of a 25 point assessment. The pre scores assessing attitudes were also more positive than most health professionals studied. Subsequent to the course, attitudes were modestly enhanced. Details of these findings will be described in this session. The case-based, evidence-based, and community-based methods utilized in this course, appear to be providing a positive environment for improving students knowledge and attitudes towards geriatric care. It is hoped that chiropractors may play a role in providing for the healthcare needs of our aging world.

Learning Objectives:
Identify standard assessment tools for assessing student attitudes about and knowledge of geriatrics. Describe the changes in chiropractic students' knowledge and attitudes after a 30 hour course in Healthy Aging. Compare these findings with those of other health professionals.

Keywords: Aging, Health Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a chiropractic educator with considerable expertise in geriatrics.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.