Patient Teaching Associate Program
The Patient Teaching Associate (PTA) program is an innovative education model designed to assist the development of patient-centred clinical skills in students. It provides Year 3 medical students with the opportunity to be exposed to, and to learn from, volunteer patients living with chronic conditions. Research has established important links between patient-centered clinical skills and positive health outcomes.
Volunteering as a patient is a great opportunity to influence the next generation of medical professionals and ensure a patient perspective is incorporated in our Medical Student Programs. Volunteers also enjoy the opportunity to work with other patients, clinicians and students in a friendly and collaborative setting.
If you are interested in participating or obtaining further information then please contact the PTA program team.
P: (03) 9091 8821
Do you have a medical qualification, a passion for medical education and are interested in being a tutor within the Patient Teaching Associate program? Please forward a copy of your CV to the PTA Program Team firstname.lastname@example.org.
PTA sessions take place on Friday afternoons between 1:15pm and 4:30pm
Clinical Consultation Rooms,
Eastern Health Clinical School,
Level 1, 5 Arnold St,
Box Hill, VIC 3128
What happens in PTA sessions?
The session is based on a consultation that you could expect if you were meeting a doctor at your GP clinic for the first time. It is not assumed that you have attended with a particular problem needing attention, more that the student doctors want to get an overall picture of your health situation at the time.
During the consultation, students practice either history-taking, clinical examination, or reviewing a management plan with the patient, under the supervision of a clinical tutor. Typically, one student is allocated to each role (history, examination, management) during the consultation.
At the end of each consultation, students are provided verbal and written feedback on their task performance and patient-centredness by the patient, followed by self-reflection and feedback from peers and the clinical tutor.
Do the feedback comments in PTA contribute towards the students’ final marks?
No, all feedback provided in PTA is formative (i.e., it does not contribute to the students’ final marks).
How long does the session go for?
We ask volunteers to attend between 1:15pm and 4:30pm. During this time patients see two groups of 3 students with a break in between groups for afternoon tea.
How many PTAs are needed on a day?
Four PTAs are required each Friday afternoon.
How often do you need to volunteer?
It is up to you, but no more than three times a semester. Ideally, we would like our students not to see the same patient twice.
Can I get a second opinion from the students about my condition?
No, our students and clinical tutors do not offer you medical advice or treatment.