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Jessica E. Rabski, Ashirbani Saha, Michael D. Cusimano, and FRCSC DABNS

OBJECTIVE

Competency-based medical education (CBME), an outcomes-based approach to medical education, continues to be implemented across many postgraduate medical education programs worldwide, including a recent introduction into Canadian neurosurgical training programs (July 2019). The success of this educational paradigm shift requires frequent faculty observation and evaluation of residents performing defined tasks of the specialty. A main challenge involves providing residents with frequent performance evaluations and feedback that are feasible for faculty to complete. This study aims to define what is currently happening and what changes are needed to make CBME successful for the certification of neurosurgeons' competence.

METHODS

A 55-item questionnaire was emailed nationwide to survey Canadian neurosurgical faculty.

RESULTS

Fifty-two complete responses were received and achieved a distribution highly correlated with the number of faculty neurosurgeons practicing in each Canadian province (Pearson's r = 0.94). Two-thirds (35/52) of faculty reported currently taking a median of 10 minutes to complete evaluation forms at the end of a resident's rotation block. Regardless of the faculty's province of practice (p = 0.50) or years of experience (p = 0.06), they reported 3 minutes (minimum 1 minute, maximum 10 minutes, interquartile range [IQR] 3 minutes) as a feasible amount of time to spend completing an evaluation form following an observation of a resident's performance of an entrustable professional activity (EPA). If evaluation forms took 3 minutes to complete, 85% of respondents (44/52) would complete EPA evaluations weekly or daily. The faculty recommended 5 minutes as a feasible amount of time to provide oral feedback (minimum 1 minute, maximum 20 minutes, IQR 3.25 minutes), which was significantly higher (p = 0.00099) than their recommended amount of time for completing evaluation forms. The majority of faculty (71%) stated they would prefer to access resident evaluation forms through a mobile application compared to a paper form (12%), an evaluation website (8%), or through a URL link sent via email (10%; p = 0.0032).

CONCLUSIONS

To facilitate the successful implementation of CBME into a neurosurgical training curriculum, resident EPA assessment forms should take 3 minutes or less to complete and be accessible through a mobile application.

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Ami Baba, Ashirbani Saha, Melissa D. McCradden, Kanwar Boparai, Shudong Zhang, Farhad Pirouzmand, Kim Edelstein, Gelareh Zadeh, and Michael D. Cusimano

OBJECTIVE

Meningiomas can have significant impact on health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Patient-centered, disease-specific instruments for assessing HRQOL in these patients are lacking. To this end, the authors sought to develop and validate a meningioma-specific HRQOL questionnaire through a standardized, patient-centered questionnaire development methodology.

METHODS

The development of the questionnaire involved three main phases: item generation, item reduction, and validation. Item generation consisted of semistructured interviews with patients (n = 30), informal caregivers (n = 12), and healthcare providers (n = 8) to create a preliminary list of items. Item reduction with 60 patients was guided by the clinical impact method, multiple correspondence analysis, and hierarchical cluster analysis. The validation phase involved 162 patients and collected evidence on extreme-groups validity; concurrent validity with the SF-36, FACT-Br, and EQ-5D; and test-retest reliability. The questionnaire takes on average 11 minutes to complete.

RESULTS

The meningioma-specific quality-of-life questionnaire (MQOL) consists of 70 items representing 9 domains. Cronbach’s alpha for each domain ranged from 0.61 to 0.91. Concurrent validity testing demonstrated construct validity, while extreme-groups testing (p = 1.45E-11) confirmed the MQOL’s ability to distinguish between different groups of patients.

CONCLUSIONS

The MQOL is a validated, reliable, and feasible questionnaire designed specifically for evaluating QOL in meningioma patients. This disease-specific questionnaire will be fundamentally helpful in better understanding and capturing HRQOL in the meningioma patient population and can be used in both clinical and research settings.