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      Hospital‐based dental externship during COVID‐19 pandemic: Think virtual!

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          Dear Editor, Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID‐19) is a condition caused by the novel pathogen severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‐CoV‐2). 1 Originating from bats, the virus is thought to have been initially transmitted from animal to person in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, followed by person‐to‐person transmission that has subsequently spread throughout the world. 1 On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization characterized the COVID‐19 outbreak as a pandemic, the first kind which has been attributed to a new coronavirus. 1 Currently, there is no vaccine against SARS‐CoV‐2, and there are no medications used with definitive success in treating the disease. 2 Management consists mainly of supportive therapy and treating the symptoms in attempts to prevent respiratory failure. 2 The COVID‐19 pandemic has had a major impact on dental education. In the United States, most dental schools have ceased clinical activities, except for dental emergencies, and didactic classes have been converted to remote learning through a variety of technological platforms. 3 Faculty and students adapted to a completely virtual dental curriculum, which will likely be in place for the foreseeable future. 4 Similar to other dental schools, student graduation requirements at Penn Dental Medicine (PDM) were still pending completion at the time of the pandemic. At PDM, this included participation in a hospital‐based dental externship and completion of an online hospital‐based Objective Simulated Clinical Examination (OSCE) in this area. PDM offers students a variety of externship opportunities in hospital dentistry at several health care facilities, however, participation in an externship outside of the home institution was not feasible due to the pandemic. Therefore, it was determined that those students (n = 3) who had not completed this requirement at the time of the pandemic would be offered an oral medicine externship at Penn Medicine and subsequently challenge the hospital‐based OSCE. The conundrum now was how to afford this clinical experience under a stay at home order during the current pandemic. 5 A virtual, hospital‐based oral medicine externship was created using video and social media‐based technology for students (n = 3) required to complete this requirement prior to graduation. The first part of the experience consisted of a PowerPoint presentation created by the Externship Director (ES), Director of Postdoctoral Oral Medicine (TT) and Department Chair (TS) to provide detailed information regarding: (a) the physical hospital and outpatient oral medicine clinic environment, (b) the clinical care team, (c) nature of outpatient oral medicine clinical services provided, (d) types of medical providers who refer patients for oral medicine clinical services, and (e) specific examples of common inpatient consultations performed by the oral medicine service. The presentation was recorded with voice narrative by the Externship Director using a video platform and was compulsory viewing prior to advancing to the second part of the experience, which consisted of an interactive conference between the student and Externship Director using a social media platform. The purpose of this was to (a) allow the Externship Director an opportunity to assess the student's general comprehension of fundamental concepts and (b) afford the student an opportunity to independently demonstrate knowledge regarding evaluation and management of common inpatient oral medicine clinical cases. After completion of the virtual experience, each student successfully completed the online hospital‐based OSCE to confirm attainment of knowledge, skill, and value in this area. The COVID‐19 pandemic forced health education professionals to completely rethink models of education delivery. Traditional in‐person learning modalities in the classrooms and clinics were not feasible due to social distancing measures mandated by federal, state, and local governments in the United States to mitigate the spread of SARS‐CoV‐2. Since self‐directed learning opportunities in health professions education using Internet‐based media are now commonplace, 6 we decided to capitalize on this technology to ensure the requirement of participating in a hospital‐based dental externship was met. We learned this method of delivering an externship is effective in the absence of being physically present in the clinical environment, as evidenced by successful student completion of the OSCE and positive verbal feedback from both students and Externship Director. We also learned this may be an opportunity for students in other dental schools, as well as other health care professions, to meet educational requirements and gain appreciation for clinical oral medicine if their institutions do not afford them similar opportunities. This will allow current students in a variety of health care professions to potentially advance and optimize clinical outcomes for their future patients, as they will become modern‐day clinicians dedicated to comprehensive and interprofessional health care. CONFLICT OF INTEREST Personal fees from University of Pennsylvania and American Academy of Oral Medicine outside the submitted work: Eric T. Stoopler. Personal fees from University of Pennsylvania: Takako I. Tanaka. Personal fees from University of Pennsylvania: Thomas P. Sollecito. Ethical approval was not received because this is an editorial. The authors confirm that the content of this submission has not been published or submitted for publication elsewhere.

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          Impact of COVID-19 on dental education in the United States

          Dental institutions in the United States are reeling from the consequences of the novel SARS-CoV2 coronavirus, the causative agent of CODIV-19. As oral health care providers, we have been trained on prevention of aerosol transmissible diseases, but we are still grappling with many unknown factors regarding COVID-19. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Dental Association (ADA), and local state agencies are releasing updates on guidelines for dentists and patients, no official information exists for dental institutions on how to effectively follow the recommended guidelines including "shelter in place" with social distancing to protect students, faculty, staff, and patients, and still ensure continuity of dental education. This article discusses the challenges that we face currently and offers some simple strategies to bridge the gaps in dental education to overcome this emergency.
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            Is Open Access

            Medical Education for “Generation Z”: Everything online?! – An analysis of Internet-based media use by teachers in medicine

            Aim: The aims of this study were to gain an overview of the web-based media used during the clinical phase of medical study at German medical schools and to identify the resources needed for web-based media use. Also examined were the influences on web-based media use, for instance, the assessment of their suitability for use in teaching. Method: An online survey of 264 teacher coordinators in internal medicine, surgery, anesthesiology, gynecology, pediatrics and psychiatry was conducted in March and April, 2016. This survey was carried out in the German-speaking countries using a 181-item questionnaire developed by us. Analysis took place in the form of descriptive and exploratory data analysis. Results: The response rate was 34.8% with 92 responses. Individual web-based media were actively used in the classroom by a maximum of 28% of participants. Reasons cited against using web-based media in teaching included the amount of time required and lack of support staff. The assessment of suitability revealed that interactive patient cases, podcasts and subject-specific apps for teaching medicine were predominantly viewed as constructive teaching tools. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter were considered unsuitable. When using web-based media and assessing their suitability for teaching, no correlations with the personal profiles of the teachers were found in the exploratory analysis, except regarding the use of different sources of information. Conclusion: Despite the Internet’s rapid development in the past 15 years, web-based media continue to play only a minor role in teaching medicine. Above all, teacher motivation and sufficient staff resources are necessary for more effective use of Internet-based media in the future.

              Author and article information

              Spec Care Dentist
              Spec Care Dentist
              Special Care in Dentistry
              John Wiley and Sons Inc. (Hoboken )
              22 May 2020
              [ 1 ] Department of Oral Medicine University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine Philadelphia Pennsylvania
              Author notes
              [* ] Correspondence

              Eric T. Stoopler, Department of Oral Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, 240 South 40th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

              Email: ets@

              © 2020 Special Care Dentistry Association and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

              This article is being made freely available through PubMed Central as part of the COVID-19 public health emergency response. It can be used for unrestricted research re-use and analysis in any form or by any means with acknowledgement of the original source, for the duration of the public health emergency.

              Page count
              Figures: 0, Tables: 0, Pages: 2, Words: 1018
              Letter to the Editor
              Letter to the Editor
              Custom metadata
              Converter:WILEY_ML3GV2_TO_JATSPMC version:5.8.4 mode:remove_FC converted:09.06.2020


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