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COVID-19 pandemic prompts the development of a Web-OSCE using Zoom teleconferencing to resume medical students’ clinical skills training at Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar

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  • Published on:
    Remote OSCE for final years at University of Buckingham due to Covid-19 pandemic
    • Joanne V Harris, Dean of Medicine, general practitioner University of Buckingham
    • Other Contributors:
      • Claire Stewart, Assessment lead, general practitioner

    We were interested to read about your use of a Web-OSCE to enhance clinical skills training via Zoom for third year medical students in Qatar. In the UK, medical schools have also been forced to change teaching and assessment practices due to Covid-19 and at University of Buckingham we have held a summative OSCE online for three final year medical students.
    The main cohort of final year students was able to take a shortened, amended OSCE in March 2020 before lockdown with the transfer to a non-clinical site and the use of simulated patients instead of real patients. However three students needed to take the resit OSCE at the end of May and due to the social distancing and the fact students had in some cases returned to their home countries and could not fly back to the UK, we decided to convert this to a remote OSCE (rOSCE).
    We used Microsoft Teams as the online platform due to its versatility and availability; it is free to download and works on most computer hardware. Each student was assigned a ‘channel’ on the Team and allocated an invigilator. Unlike the experience in Qatar, the students remained in the channel and the assessors and simulated patients circulated and we were able to run eight 15-minute stations in this way. As in Qatar and other settings (1) it was not possible to test practical procedures or clinical skills however these had been assessed at other points in the course. We were able to assess high level skills in these final year students...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.