Talk about playing doctor!

(Sorry about the headline--I couldn't resist!) My co-blogger over at the Medical Meetings Capsules blog, Anne Taylor-Vaisey, sent me an interesting abstract from Transplant Procedures a while ago that, believe it or not, could be interesting even to those who don't do medical meetings: Called "Play-back theatre, theatre laboratory, and role-playing: new tools in investigating the patient-physician relationship in the context of continuing medical education courses," the Italian researchers' goal was to "report on the validation of a role-playing approach, using play-back and theatre laboratory in the context of a continuing medical education (CME) course on predialysis and transplantation, to discuss the patient-physician relationship."

So they set up a two-day, highly interactive course, with the help of a theater director, that included

"play-back theatre in which experiences told by the participants were mimed by a group of actors, and theatre laboratory in which different aspects of voice and touch were explored. Opinions were gathered by an anonymous semistructured questionnaire completed by all participants."

The result? A smashing success! The Ministry of Health gave it a high score, as did the docs. " Sixteen of 18 asked to repeat the experience. The strong emotional involvement was an advantage for 15 of 18, sharing emotional aspects of the profession for 10 of 18, and usefulness in clarifying opinions on "dark sides" of our profession for 10 of 18."

The researchers concluded that nonconventional educational approaches can help the patient-physician relationship.

This is so cool! I haven't heard of anyone doing this in the medical field, though it's creeping into other types of educational activities. If anyone has experience doing this type of activity, please let me know. I'd love to know how it worked--or didn't work--for your group. I know I'd jump at the chance to take part in something like this.

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