Patient Partners are ‘patient’ volunteers who help train our future doctors
Last year, Anglia Ruskin University opened a brand new School of Medicine in Chelmsford, to help address the urgent need for more doctors and healthcare professionals in the UK and specifically Essex.
We are recruiting further volunteers* to our Patient Partners group to help train our student doctors, giving them opportunity to develop clinical and communications skills in supervised conditions.
School of Medicine graduates will be practising modern medicine into the next half of the 21st century, so we need to equip our medical students with a skills-set that ensures that they know:
How to interact with patients from an early stage
How they can effectively examine patients
How they can undertake practical procedures to ensure they have the attributes and professional attitude to function effectively as doctors.
What are Patient Partners?
Patient Partners are not medically trained but nonetheless they are volunteers who provide an invaluable role in the development and training of our students.
We enlist the help of patient volunteers to act as ‘real patients’ so that students can develop both their communication skills as well as their diagnostic abilities in simulated real-life situations. In this respect students will be better prepared when on clinical placements in hospitals, clinic and GP practices.
You can help by being a simulated and/or clinical patient.
Simulated patients volunteer to ‘act’ as patients, allowing our students to learn how to undertake consultations, perform examinations and practice procedural skills – such as taking patients’ blood pressure.
Clinical patients who have an existing or long term medical condition, volunteer to discuss their symptoms and condition with our students in order to increase their knowledge and understanding of different conditions from the patients’ perspective.
“Speaking to real patients via the Patient Partners group has been invaluable. The truth is, however hard you try you can never properly predict how a patient will feel in reaction to your communication skills. A fantastic group of people we are all very grateful for”. (Quote from ARU medical student)
Ray Berris, Co-Chair and member of the PP, said:
“Having been involved with the group since day one, it is amazing the rapport that has been built with the students and how they react to the time and effort the PP members give to supporting their training. The whole experience is very rewarding.”
*Volunteers must be 18 years old and over.