March 12, 2003
MEDIA CONTACT: Karen Blum
Medical Students' Training in Performing Pelvic Exams
Statement in response to the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology study on questioning the ethics of medical students performing pelvic exams on patients who are anesthetized:
Johns Hopkins, like most other teaching hospitals, does allow this practice, but with patient safeguards. The attending physician introduces any gyn/ob patient to the students and residents at the beginning of her care. Patients have the right to refuse student participation, and such requests are honored. In addition, patient consent forms state that medical students and/or residents will be involved in every step of their care. Students are told throughout their gyn/ob rotation that they will be exposed to womens personal and private moments, and that they are expected to foster good relationships with these patients throughout their care so the patient realizes the students are an integrated part of their care.