We have a number of ongoing activities involving students in research. IAIHD will significantly enhance our capacity to train students to participate in service-learning and community research and directly involve them in data collection, patient recruitment, patient tracking, data entry, and results dissemination.
The success of each of our projects in Kansas Physicians Engaged in Prevention Research (KPEPR) has been attributable to student involvement. Since 1999, we have had approximately 25-40 medical students per year (approximately 300) receive research training and directly assist in data collection, subject recruitment, or direct observation of primary care. Each of these students receives the equivalent of a month long clinical rotation credit for participating in this "Family Medicine 905: Family Practice Research Elective." Medical student evaluations have been very positive and we routinely have 50 medical students apply for this elective each year. Students are very attracted to the hands-on clinical work they have done with experienced rural preceptors. They find the research activities and training a valuable part of the experience. New incoming classes often learn of the elective through discussions with 2nd, 3rd, and 4th years who have had excellent experiences in the elective.
We have also had great success with the JayDoc Free Clinic, a medical student run clinic which operates two nights a week when all other Kansas City, Kansas safety-net clinics are closed. Drs. Freeman and Greiner, as co-faculty directors assisted students with development and resource procurement for this initiative starting four years ago. The program now involves Board of Directors of 8 students (rotating annually), and 80-90 percent of the entire medical student body assists as clinical volunteers, fundraising, or with committee work in support of the clinic. Board members receive elective credit for service-learning projects and portfolios they complete during each year and the program has received extensive local press and attention recently.
The Community Leadership Track, another elective program, is a selective leadership training program for medical students run by Drs. Greiner and Freeman. Approximately 10 medical students per year apply and are admitted and monthly guest lecture firesides, field trips, or mini-projects make up the core curriculum. Student leaders from the JayDoc Clinic, International Outreach, AMSA, and Rural Medicine Interest Groups make up the majority of the members.