Section 2: Professional Competencies (Clinical Skills)

Below are the generic clinical learning objectives for the GEM course. More specific objectives and checklists for individual clinical skills sessions are included in each workbook which will be issued during the course.

You should be able to:

1. Approach a patient considerately and respectfully, make appropriate introductions, and gain informed consent for undertaking whatever clinical skill you are hoping to practise.

2. Apply professional and ethical principles in dealing with patients, in particular those of confidentiality and respect for patients.

3. Take a brief clinical history from a patient with defined clinical symptoms in terms of the history of the presenting problem and basic background information.

4. Enquire about the impact of symptoms on a patient in both physical and psychosocial terms, whilst recognising and acknowledging the patient’s own beliefs, concerns and expectations about the problem.

5. Recognise the importance of gaining an overall impression of a patient in terms of physical characteristics and mobility, and to recognise and list signs of pain, distress or serious illness.

6. Recognise the importance of examining peripheral aspects of a patient before focusing on particular systems and, in particular, to be able to list clinical signs which might be detected by examining the hands, eyes, mouth and skin.

7. Palpate any part of the body, using an appropriate technique, in order to elicit signs of tenderness or presence of masses, but without causing unnecessary discomfort to the patient.

8. Correctly percuss any part of the body, using an appropriate technique, in order to distinguish dullness and resonance.

9. Correctly use a stethoscope, with appropriate positioning of earpieces, and     choice of bell or diaphragm, in order to auscultate body sounds.

10. Report and/or record the findings from a clinical history or examination in a concise, coherent and comprehensible manner.

11. For any clinical system describe the basic patho-physiology of common clinical conditions, and be able to explain such problems to patients using appropriate lay terminology.

12. For any clinical system, describe the common laboratory tests which might be performed in relation to it, and to be able to interpret these.

13. For any clinical skill, make a concise, dated and legible record of the findings and recognise the importance of this for clinical and medico-legal purposes.

14. Adequately assess and approach an emergency situation and undertake appropriate basic immediate necessary first-aid care, including cardiopulmonary resuscitation, as necessary.