In Clinical Optometric Education, Does Extern Outreach Training Produce Outreach Providers?

Jacqueline G. Davis, OD, MPH, FAAO


Abstract

In an effort to determine if clinical optometric outreach training impacts the practice patterns of its graduates, survey responses were compared from graduates of an optometric college with mandatory senior clinical outreach externships (Group II) and graduates of the same institution prior to the implementation of outreach rotations (Group I). Group II donated more hours of benevolent optometric care per week compared to Group I. Group II reported higher levels of comfort and preparedness for community outreach work when compared to Group I. It is therefore concluded that outreach rotations do influence the practice patterns of their graduates.

Key Words: outreach, underserved, uninsured, practice patterns, clinical healthcare education, health disparities

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