Purpose: The purpose of developing a diversity, equity, and inclusion curriculum on people with disabilities was to engage in discussion on the social and health disparities and barriers of people with disabilities. In doing so, we delved into understanding key events in the history of United States disability policy and started a discussion on implementable solutions to these barriers with engagement from a panel of individuals living with disabilities. Methods: We developed a series of four mandatory 1-hour lectures for our physical medicine and rehabilitation residents (PM&R), which included traditional lectures, discussions, and a panel of people with disabilities. The sessions were preceded by a 4-question survey. Results: In the pre-survey, 90% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that it is important for physicians to understand the influence of disability on patient health and clinical encounters. Yet, 60% of respondents were either not at all or somewhat knowledgeable about inequalities in healthcare for people with disabilities. 70% of respondents felt either not at all knowledgeable or somewhat knowledgeable on the inequities in society for people with disabilities. Only 30% of residents felt very confident or moderately confident in their ability to tailor care or treatment plans to the needs of patients with disabilities. Efficacy of this curriculum will be further delineated after post-survey. Conclusion: Medical education of all types should consider devoting additional time to education around people with disabilities. Based on our results, post-graduate clinicians lack the knowledge and confidence to adequately treat and support patients with disabilities. This curriculum framework may inspire others to develop similar programs throughout our community bringing greater awareness, better health equity, and better care to the community we serve.
Rezac, Kari. "Mind the Gap: People-with-Disabilities Education." (2023). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/hsc_ed_day/145