Australian general practice trainees’ exposure to ophthalmic problems and implications for training: A cross-sectional analysis

Morgan, Simon, Tapley, Amanda, Henderson, Kim M., Spike, Neil A., McArthur, Lawrie A., Stewart, Rebecca, Davey, Andrew R., Dunlop, Anthony, Van Driel, Mieke L., and Magin, Parker J. (2016) Australian general practice trainees’ exposure to ophthalmic problems and implications for training: A cross-sectional analysis. Journal of Primary Health Care, 8 (4). pp. 295-302.

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INTRODUCTION: Eye conditions are common presentations in Australian general practice, with the potential for serious sequelae. Pre-vocational ophthalmology training for General Practitioner (GP) trainees is limited. AIM: To describe the rate, nature and associations of ophthalmic problems managed by Australian GP trainees, and derive implications for education and training. METHODS: Cross-sectional analysis from an ongoing cohort study of GP trainees’ clinical consultations. Trainees recorded demographic, clinical and educational details of consecutive patient consultations. Descriptive analyses report trainee, patient and practice demographics. Proportions of all problems managed in these consultations that were ophthalmology-related were calculated with 95% confidence intervals (CI). Associations were tested using simple logistic regression within the generalised estimating equations (GEE) framework. RESULTS: In total, 884 trainees returned data on 184,476 individual problems or diagnoses from 118,541 encounters. There were 2649 ophthalmology-related problems, equating to 1.4% (95% CI: 1.38-1.49) of all problems managed. The most common eye presentations were conjunctivitis (32.5% of total problems), eyelid problems (14.9%), foreign body (5.3%) and dry eye (4.7%). Statistically significant associations were male trainee; male patient and patient aged 14 years or under; the problem being new and the patient being new to both trainee and practice; urban and of higher socioeconomic status practice location; the practice nurse not being involved; planned follow up not arranged; referral made; in-consultation information sought; and learning goals generated. DISCUSSION: Trainees have comparable ophthalmology exposure to established GPs. However, associations with referral and information-seeking suggest GP trainees find ophthalmic problems challenging, reinforcing the critical importance of appropriate training.

Item ID: 75250
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1172-6156
Keywords: Education, Eye disease, General practice, Graduate, Medical, Ophthalmology
Copyright Information: This is an open access article licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2022 23:27
FoR Codes: 39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390110 Medicine, nursing and health curriculum and pedagogy @ 50%
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3212 Ophthalmology and optometry > 321201 Ophthalmology @ 50%
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