A new curriculum designed to help new physicians navigate the ups and downs of the fast-changing world of medicine has been launched at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.

“The explosion of clinical information and technology, the development of complex healthcare systems, a move from inpatient to outpatient care settings, and team science are all changing medicine and healthcare,” says Dr. Bruce T. Liang, dean of UConn School of Medicine. “Our new curriculum is a platform to make our students the best possible future doctors and prepare them to be healthcare leaders.”

The new approach – MDelta – stands for Making a Difference in Education, Learning, and Teaching Across the Curriculum has three key areas for students to focus: exploration, clinical immersion and transformation. Like other schools rolling out new curricula around the ever-changing healthcare field, MDelta gives students the opportunity to work in clinical settings early on, with each student being assigned to a primary care physician so they can not only gain experience in a clinical setting, but also have the chance to follow the health of patients over a 3-year period.

Additionally, students are prepped for later stages of their training by exposure to inpatient and outpatient “immersion experiences across the care spectrum from internal medicine to surgery.” “Early clinical and health system exposure is an integral part of the new curriculum along with inter-professional activities. A cutting-edge holistic assessment program provides time for students to evaluate their competencies as they reach milestones in their development,” says Dr. Suzanne Rose, senior associate dean for education at UConn School of Medicine.

Each day, students use what’s called Remote Active Learning Materials (REALM) to help them with clinical skills training and preparing for patient case studies. In addition, students get to take a course called VITALS (Vertically Integrated Teams Aligned in Learning and Scholarship) to teach healthcare policy, population health, ethics, and current events that affect community in the US and abroad.

To learn more about MDelta, visit medicine.uconn.edu/curriculum/md-program/m-delta-curriculum