Online Program

Human Trafficking Education and Assessment for Medical Students

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Theresa Yankovich, School of Medicine, Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, Rochester, MI
Introduction: Victims of human trafficking experience health problems, with a recent study suggesting that 87.8% of victims had been in contact with a health care professional while they were trafficked.  This places medical professionals in a unique position to interact with victims.  Consequently, it is imperative that professionals acquire the skills to detect and care for these victims.  This study aimed to determine whether an educational intervention increased medical students’ awareness of human trafficking and altered their attitudes towards detecting and reporting victims.

Methods: The study was conducted with 98 students at OUWB School of Medicine.  Participants listened to a presentation on recognizing and reporting victims of human trafficking, and complete a pre and post-session survey.  Pre/Post survey questions were analyzed to assess alterations in responses.  The outcomes evaluated were awareness of the crime, confidence identifying a potential victim, and willingness to report a victim.  Additional information was gathered to assess students’ opinions towards further interventions.

Results: Mean differences in pre-post scores on 4 item likert scale questions were evaluated, with positive differences showing an improvement in the concept being measured. Matched pairs t-tests found significant improvement (p<0.001) in responses to questions related to awareness of human trafficking (Mean Difference=0.61, SD=0.57), confidence in ability to detect a potential victim Mean Difference=1.59, SD=0.79), and self-reported willingness to report a potential victim (Mean Difference=0.54, SD=0.79).

Conclusion: The use of an educational intervention increased medical students’ knowledge of human trafficking, as well a their confidence in detecting and willingness to report potential victims.

Learning Areas:

Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the effects of an educational intervention on medical students’ awareness and knowledge of human trafficking in the United States. Assess alterations in students’ confidence in identifying potential victims of human trafficking, and their ability to report the issue following an educational presentation.

Keyword(s): Health Promotion and Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I completed a "Train the Trainer" course through the Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force enabling me to educate various populations on human trafficking. I am a member of the Southeast Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force and have educated medical students in the area on the topic.
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.