Skip to main content
Is feedback to medical learners associated with characteristics of improved patient care?
Perspectives on medical education
  • Victoria Hayes, Maine Medical Center
  • Robert Bing-You, Maine Medical Center
  • Kalli Varaklis, Maine Medical Center
  • Robert Trowbridge, Maine Medical Center
  • Heather Kemp, Maine Medical Center
  • Dina McKelvy, Maine Medical Center
Document Type
Publication Date
Medical Education, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Family Medicine, Library

PURPOSE: To investigate the association of medical learner feedback with patient management and outcomes.

METHODS: The authors investigated 27 articles that utilized patient data or chart reviews as a subset of a prior feedback scoping review. Data extraction was completed by two authors and all authors reviewed the descriptive data analysis.

RESULTS: The studies were predominantly short-term investigations conducted in the US at academic teaching hospitals (89%) with one medical discipline (78%), most commonly internal medicine (56%). Patient-related outcomes primarily involved improved documentation (26%) and adherence to practice guidelines (19%) and were mostly measured through chart reviews (56%) or direct observation (15%). The primary method of feedback delivery involved a written format (30%). The majority of the studies showed a positive effect of feedback on the patient-oriented study outcomes (82%), although most involved a non-rigorous study design.

CONCLUSIONS: Published studies focusing on the relationship between medical learner feedback and patient care are sparse. Most involve a single discipline at a single institution and are of a non-rigorous design. Measurements of improved patient outcomes are restricted to changes in management, procedures and documentation. Well-designed studies that directly link learner feedback to patient outcomes may help to support the use of feedback in teaching clinical outcomes improvement in alignment with competency-based milestones.

Citation Information
Victoria Hayes, Robert Bing-You, Kalli Varaklis, Robert Trowbridge, et al.. "Is feedback to medical learners associated with characteristics of improved patient care?" Perspectives on medical education Vol. 6 Iss. 5 (2017) p. 319 - 324 ISSN: 2212-2761
Available at: