Maternal and Child Health Outcomes Track

Lindsay A Thompson

Lindsay A Thompson M.D.

Department: MD-PEDS-GENERAL
Meredith E Mowitz

Meredith E Mowitz MD, MS

Department: MD-PEDS-NEONATOLOGY

Student Limit of 5

Introduction

The Maternal and Child Health Outcomes Pathway is a formal track within the University of Florida College of Medicine curriculum.  It is an adjunct pathway to the Clinical and Outcomes Based Research for Students pathway.  This pathway is designed to help students answer the following crucial questions with a focus on the issues associated with maternal and child health:

What works? For which patients or populations? Under what circumstances?

Training in maternal and child health outcomes focuses on how to evaluate and inform health care delivery systems, community-level interventions, and health policy.  Nationally, the National Institutes of Health and other federal and state agencies focus on the development of evidenced-based programs and policies to promote maternal and child health, improve health care delivery, and enhance health outcomes. 

Students who enroll in this track will develop additional knowledge and skills about: translating research into practice and policy, improving the quality and efficiency of health programs, and achieving more equitable and appropriate delivery of health programs and clinical care, particularly for underserved and vulnerable populations.

Overall Goals and Objectives

Students who complete the Maternal and Child Outcomes Pathway will gain increased exposure to evidence-based practices in the areas of maternal and child health promotion and disease prevention, health outcomes for a range of medical conditions, comparative effectiveness studies, and health policy development, implementation, and evaluation.  In addition, students will also be better prepared to more effectively participate in community-based research, critically evaluate clinical research studies, and participate in policy development. 

Specific pathway objectives include:

  • Follow the Clinical and Outcomes Based Research for Students pathway to gain the fundamental knowledge therein.
  • Demonstrate additional foundational understanding of:
    • the basic conceptual framework of measurement and evaluation of maternal and child health outcomes for a range of patient populations and healthcare settings;
    • how economic, social, and environmental conditions and policies influence maternal and child health risks, behaviors, and outcomes and how physicians can incorporate this knowledge into patient care;
    • healthcare organization, financing, and policy development and implementation processes in the U.S.;
    • the key phases in the translational research continuum and the role of maternal and child health outcomes research and health policy in translational research;
    • different types of outcomes research questions, appropriate study designs, and ethical and privacy considerations for different types of data sources and study designs.
  • Critically analyze peer-reviewed articles in the maternal and child health outcomes and policy academic literature.
  • Formulate a research question or problem statement and use appropriate and rigorous methods to conduct a final project that will be reviewed by faculty and peers and publicly disseminated. (This is the cornerstone of this pathway.)

Requirements

  1. Develop a learning compact in collaboration with the Faculty Mentor and Course Director that includes project objectives, action/research plan with timeline, outcomes, and assessment criteria. 
  2. Complete Option 1 or 2 below in consultation with the Faculty Mentor and Course Director.
  3. Submit and present final project.

Outcomes and Assessment

Students will develop a learning compact in collaboration with the Faculty Mentor and Course Director that includes their project goals and outcomes.  Project outcomes include a poster presentation at College of Medicine Research Day and may additionally include abstract presentation at medical student research forums, conference presentations, co-authorship on a manuscript, curriculum design, development of instructional materials or teaching modules, etc. 

The final project will be judged according to Glassick’s criteria for scholarship (Scholarship Assessed, 2000):

  • Clear goals
  • Adequate preparation
  • Appropriate methods
  • Significant (meaningful) results
  • Effective presentation
  • Reflective critique

Timeline for Core Components of the Maternal and Child Health Outcomes Pathway

All Students:

Follow the courses listed for the Clinical and Outcomes Based Research for Students Pathway as these are part of the core curriculum and provide foundational material for the Maternal and Child Health Outcomes Discovery Pathway.

Additionally

  1. MS-1 Spring Term
    • Summer project preparation – 10 hours of preparation for summer research project (through Thursday afternoons and/or other seminars or learning modules)  – specifics to be determined with the Faculty Mentor and Course Director
    • UF IRB-01 Training
    • Develop individualized learning plan with the Faculty Mentor and Course Director
  2. MSRP – Medical Student Research Program
    • Complete MSRP project on a health outcomes and policy topic with Faculty Mentor
  3. MS-4
    • Possible Capstone Project for consideration to graduate with honors.