Innovation Grants

Grant Results & Outcomes

Learn about the AAIM initiative to foster education innovations in academic internal medicine through a seed grant program. These projects were selected to put their innovative ideas in action and develop resources that can be shared with others.

High Value Care

Development of a High Value Bedside Examination: Needs Assessment for a Novel Physical Diagnosis Curriculum

The project team designed a physical examination curriculum that emphasizes the high value and cost‐effectiveness of bedside diagnostic skills. The “high value, cost‐effective physical exam” (HVPE) teaching kit are online modules were co‐authored by fourth year students and project team members and can be incorporated into existing online curricula or learning platforms, e.g., SIMPLE cases on MedU.

Participating Institutions: Medical College of Wisconsin, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, and Jefferson Medical College
Submitting Author: Paul A. Bergl, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Links: (1) MedEd Portal: High Value Care Cases in Physical Diagnosis – A web-based curriculum for senior medical students, (2) Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017: Poster Presentation

Efficacy of a Program Using Standardized Patients to Improve Practice of High Value Care

This project tested the efficacy of utilizing standardized patients to improve a student’s knowledge and practice of high value care. The project plan called for (1) developing a standardized patient scenario that can be used to train learners how to effectively practice high value care, (2) educating medical students about the diagnostic limitations of laboratory tests and radiologic imaging and how to translate into patient friendly language, and (3) exposing students to the costs of healthcare to insurance companies and the patient.

Participating Institutions: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Submitting Author: Amit K. Pahwa, MD
Project Type: Technology and Teaching
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: (username: test_user_1; password:password_1)

Reducing Unnecessary Chest X-Rays: A Housestaff-led Initiative to Implement Choosing Wisely Recommendations in Intensive Care Units

Vanderbilt’s Housestaff Choosing Wisely Steering Committee launched an initiative to reduce unnecessary daily chest x-rays (CXRs) in clinically stable intensive care unit patients which included resident education, developing promotional materials, and providing weekly data feedback to clinicians with peer comparison data.

Submitting Authors: Brett Iams, MD and David Leverenz, MD
Participating Institution: Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Project Type: Research Support
Year Awarded: FY 2016
Links: (1) Workshop at Skills Development Conference 2016 and (2) VUMC Choosing Wisely flyer

Quality and Safety

Improving "Code Blue" Resuscitation in the Medical ICU: An Inter-Professional Approach Utilizing Team-Based Simulation and Interactive Group Training

The project team created an inter-professional, simulation‐enhanced, team‐based "code blue" (In‐Hospital Cardiac Arrest or IHCA) curriculum that has been implemented monthly at the University of Louisville School of Medicine starting January 2015. The IHCA curriculum improved housestaff comfort and preparedness to perform various resuscitation skills during "code blue," and to serve as code team leader.

Participating Institutions: University of Louisville School of Medicine
Submitting Author: Lorrel E. Brown, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: (1) Improving "Code Blue" Curriculum and Video, and (2) poster presentation

Cap Assisted Colonoscopy and Quality Based Competency in Colonoscopy among Trainees

The project is a single center, prospective, randomized controlled trial of colonoscopies performed by GI trainees to determine if cap assisted colonoscopy results in improved technical and quality measures of competency in novice endoscopy trainees. Cap assisted colonoscopy resulted in significant improvement in CIT, ICIR, and overall ACE assessment scores when compared to standard colonoscopy in colonoscopy trainees without prior experience in the first three months of training.

Participating Institutions: Baylor College of Medicine
Submitting Author: Kalpesh Patel, MD
Project Type: Research Support
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: Poster presentation at APDIM Conference Spring 2016

DX: Diagnostic Excellence - A Prototype Virtual Patient Case to Reduce Diagnostic Error

The aim of the project was to develop and evaluate the prototype case for a series of online virtual patient cases focused on diagnostic error and improving the diagnostic process (DX: Diagnostic Excellence). It will be the pilot for a series of cases that teach students the cognitive processes and system‐related issues leading to diagnostic error, and will equip students with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to mitigate diagnostic error. The pilot program, developed on MedU platform, is offered without charge and will supplement existing patient safety curricula.

Participating Institutions: MedU and the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine
Submitting Author: Andrew PJ Olson, MD
Project Type: Technology and Teaching
Year Awarded: FY2015
Links: (1) DX: Diagnostic Excellence online course on Aquifer, (2) Presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2015, (3) Med Ed Portal Decision - Diagnosis: An Introduction to Diagnostic Error and Medical Decision-Making

Systems of Care Curriculum for Hospitalist Residents

The goal of this project was to expand the existing stroke systems of care curriculum for hospitalist residents to another clinical microsystem: stroke alerts. Stroke alerts involve complex interprofessional collaboration and transitions of care, yet must operate seamlessly to achieve optimal patient outcomes. Hospitalists must be able to provide frontline care to acute stroke patients, as neurologists may not always be readily available out in the community. The project team developed stroke alert simulation sessions to provide hospitalist residents with the opportunity to lead stroke alerts and hone their clinical decision‐making, communication, and teamwork skills.

Participating Institutions: University of Colorado School of Medicine
Submitting Author: Darlene Tad-y, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: Systems of Care curriculum

Safer Together: An Novel Interprofessional Near-Miss Root Cause Analysis Curriculum

The Near Miss Root Cause Analysis was developed as a practicum in patient safety, giving residents hands on experience in error evaluation. The project team expanded the original curriculum by adding multiple professions to the investigation group, developing a more comprehensive interprofessional action plan and adding teamwork skills and assessment to the course objectives.

Participating institution: Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University
Submitting author: Rebecca Jaffe, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2016
Link: Poster presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017

Teaching and Learning

Flat Screen Simulation of Family Meeting Scenarios Combined with Real-Time Experiential Learning for Resident Education

Effective training in family conference facilitation in the ICU has been identified as a need by postgraduate trainees during a mixed-methods pilot study. The project team developed a four-step curriculum in facilitation of family conferences in the medical intensive care unit for senior internal medicine residents. The curriculum is designed for integration into day-to-day patient care activities and includes an interactive workshop for teaching communication skills, structured pre- and postconference interdisciplinary team huddles, and peer feedback through direct observation of actual family conferences.

Participating Institutions: Pennsylvania State College of Medicine and Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Submitting Author: Susan Glod, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: MedEd Portal: A Curriculum to Enhance Resident Communication Skills During Family Conferences in the Intensive Care Unit

Developing a Curriculum in Cancer Survivorship for Primary Care Providers (PCPs)

This project was designed to raise awareness of the growing population of adult survivors of cancer, many of whom will be cared for by PCPs, either alone or in partnership with an oncologist. The project team developed a curriculum to educate participating faculty and their trainees in caring for cancer patients from the time of diagnosis, through treatment and for the remainder of their life. The focus was on finding safe and effective ways to transition care from the oncology clinic to primary care for the cancer survivor.

Participating Institutions: St. Vincent's Medical Center and Quinnipiac University School of Medicine
Submitting Author: Radhika Khwaja, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: Video of curriculum

Using Virtual Patients to Learn Key Cross Cover Skills

The project team designed and implement web-based virtual patient modules to develop fourth year medical students’ knowledge and skills in approaching and managing common cross cover scenarios on inpatient general internal medicine wards.

Participating Institutions: Medical College of Wisconsin
Submitting Author: Ankur Segon, MD
Project Type: Technology and Teaching
Year Awarded: FY2015

The Electronic Health Record as Teaching Tool

The project team developed an electronic tool for faculty development demonstrating the teaching capabilities of the Electronic Health Record (EHR). In addition to providing education regarding documentation, billing and compliance issues, the tool demonstrated techniques for maintaining effective interpersonal communication with patients and the multidisciplinary team while using the EHR. The project team created a mnemonic to make the EHR more learner centered: LEARNER.

Participating Institutions: Duke AHEAD (Academy for Health Professions Education and Academic Development), Duke University School of Medicine, UNC Academy of Educators, and University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Submitting Author: Diana B. McNeill, MD
Project Type: Technology and Teaching
Year Awarded: FY2015
Links: (1) Video Presentation, (2) Workshop at 2016 Skills Development Conference

Teaching Effective Goals-of-Care Conversations: An Initiative to Enhance End-of-Life Communication for Residents and Faculty

The project team created a program to teach the “goals-of-care” discussion to internal medicine (IM) residents and academic hospitalists using acting patients in a simulated case study. Learners will analyze and practice the components of goals-of-care discussions (including delivering difficult news and exploring goals) with acting patients in a simulated hospital setting.

Participating Institution: University of Massachusetts Medical School
Submitting Author: Vendana Nagpal, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2016
Link: Workshop presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017

Leveraging AIM Expertise – Creating and Maintaining a Research Administration Best Practices Toolkit Repository

Research administration is a combination of adherence to regulatory policies (NIH, DOD, VA) coupled with processes developed at institutions. Departments are managing a national priority with critical implications for financing a Department and for recruitment and retention of faculty. The project team leveraged AIM's collective expertise to create research administrator best practices in research administration.

Participating Institutions: Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine with Emory University School of Medicine, Duke University School of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine Northwestern University, and University of Michigan Medical School.
Submitting authors: John Joseph Gough, Nancy Jenkins, Janet M. Reagan, Jennifer Felten, Mary Freer, Sheri L. Lawrence, and Monica Fawthrop.
Project Type: Faculty/staff development
Links: (1) Webpage with videos, and (2) Poster presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017

Understanding the Process of Taking Ownership

The objective of this study is to better understand the processes involved when medical students “take ownership” in the third year of medical school. In a pilot study conducted in September 2015 at GRU, this term “taking ownership” was used by the Clerkship Director for Internal Medical to indicate an important objective for third year students. Data will be used to create an intervention to be used in the internal medicine orientation, which is mandatory for all students entering Internal Medicine. Subsequently, the intervention will be evaluated in terms of how well it prepared students to understand and demonstrate ownership.

Participating Institution: Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University
Submitting Author: Tasha Wyatt, PhD
Project Type: Research Support
Year Awarded: FY 2016
Links: (1) Kinetic text video on YouTube, (2) Poster presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017, (3) Journal of Teaching and Learning in Medicine

Health Care Disparities

Global Is Local: Creating, Piloting and Evaluating a Community-Engaged Service Learning Rotation with Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers in Rural Minnesota

As part of a collaborative group with Pharmacy, Dental and Medicine Faculty, Dr. Kirsch and colleagues created a pilot rotation on community‐engaged and service learning opportunity in rural Minnesota. Learners worked in community health observing multiple agricultural workplaces, meeting with community leaders and seeing patients, under faculty supervision, via two mobile medical units that visited communities of Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers (MSFW) in rural Minnesota.

Participating Institutions: University of Minnesota Medical School, University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, University of Minnesota School of Dentistry, and University of Minnesota Department of Chicano and Latino Studies
Submitting Author: Jonathan D. Kirsch, MD
Project Type: Curriculum Development
Year Awarded: FY2015
Link: Poster at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2015

Resilience, Burnout, and Wellness

Resident Well-Being: Development and Validation of an Assessment System

The project team proposed to validate a system of tools designed to assess and monitor resident well-being. The team employed a comprehensive approach to assessing well-being - via a general self-report assessment scale collected yearly, a weekly self-report item collected with duty hours, faculty reports, and also nurse/staff/peer reports. Moreover, they linked the results of these indices with other meaningful scales and criteria, and identify application heuristics.

Participating Institution: University of Texas Southwestern
Submitting Author: Shannon Scielzo, PhD
Project Type: Research Support
Year Awarded: FY2016
Link: Poster presentation at Academic Internal Medicine Week 2017