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Course-Based Removal From Patient Care Activities

Patient welfare is the most important part of each clinical course. In all clinical courses the students’ knowledge, application of skills, and behavior are evaluated by the faculty throughout the course to ensure that patient welfare is protected. Such student evaluation cannot wait until the end of a quarter as it does in didactic or laboratory courses. In the event that a student’s lack of knowledge, skill, or inappropriate behavior places a patient’s welfare at risk, the course director, in consultation with appropriate faculty members, will take action to protect patients and provide remedial instruction for the student.

The course directors’ actions can range from consulting with the student to temporarily removing him/her from clinical activities in that particular course for a defined period of time. Initial removal from clinical activity usually will be for a period of one week; additional or longer removals can be imposed as necessary. During the period of removal from patient care activities, there will be a meeting between the student and Course Director, in consultation with the Associate Dean for Education and Student Affairs, at which time a plan for the student’s remediation and clinical reinstatement will be developed. Failure to remediate problems that lead to temporary removal can be grounds for failing the course.

Examples of circumstances in which ongoing evaluation of student clinical performance may lead to temporary removal from clinical care are:

  1. The student lacks basic knowledge to perform or apply specific clinical procedures.
  2. The student lacks the necessary psychomotor skills for clinical procedures.
  3. The student exhibits poor communication skills which lead to misunderstandings with patients and/or faculty, or which interfere with safe and effective treatment of patients.
  4. The student does not comply with appropriate requests made by attending faculty.
  5. The student exhibits a lack of respect or compassion for a patient.
  6. The student willfully neglects clinic or course policy.

The Course-Based Removal From Patient Care Activities policy is distinct from SUSPENSION as defined in the Policies Applying to Campus Activities, Organizations, and Students (PACOAS) section 105.05. Suspension through PACOAS policy is not equivalent and refers to termination of student status for a period of time.