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1.
Healthcare (Basel) ; 10(1)2021 Dec 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613729

ABSTRACT

During the COVID-19 pandemic, conducting face-to-face medical residency interviews was challenging due to infection prevention precautions, social distancing, and travel restrictions. Virtual interviews were implemented by the Saudi Commission for Health Specialties (SCFHS) as an alternative process for residency matching while striving to maintain the same quality standards. This national survey was conducted to assess the satisfaction and perceptions of faculty members' virtual interview performance in the assessment for the medical training residency programs. Among the participating 173 faculty members, 34.1% did not have previous experience with video-conferencing. The Zoom application was the most commonly used platform (65.9%). Most (89.6%) of the faculty perceived virtual interviews as "adequate" platforms on which the candidates could express themselves, while almost half of the faculty (53.8%) agreed that virtual interviews allowed them to accurately reach an impression about the candidates. Overall, 73.4% of faculty felt comfortable ranking the virtually interviewed candidates. We conclude that the acceptance of participating faculty members in the first Saudi medical residency training matching cycle virtual interviewing event was well-perceived. This study provides evidence for future application and research of virtual interviews in residency candidates' assessment, especially after the pandemic crisis resolves.

2.
Front Public Health ; 9: 752323, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1497184

ABSTRACT

Objectives: To quantify parental acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine and assess the vaccine hesitancy (VH) for COVID-19 vs. childhood vaccines. Methods: Eight vaccine hesitancy scale (VHS) items, adopted from WHO's Strategic Advisory Group of Immunization (SAGE), were used to assess VH for COVID-19 vaccine vs. routine childhood vaccines. We distributed the online survey to parents with the commence of the national childhood COVID-19 vaccination program in Saudi Arabia. Results: Among 3,167 parents, 47.6% are decided to vaccinate their children against COVID-19. The most common reasons for refusal were inadequate safety information (69%) and worry about side effects (60.6%). Parents have a significantly greater positive attitudes toward children's routine vaccines vs. the COVID-19 vaccine, with higher mean VHS (±SD) = 2.98 ± 0.58 vs. 2.63 ± 0.73, respectively (p-value < 0.001). Parents agreed more that routine childhood vaccines are more essential and effective as compared to the COVID-19 vaccine (Cohen's D: 0.946, and 0.826, consecutively; T-test p-value < 0.00). There is more parental anxiety about serious side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine vs. routine childhood vaccines (Cohen's D = 0.706, p-value < 0.001). Parents who relied on the Ministry of Health information were more predicted (OR = 1.28, p-value = 0.035) to intend to vaccinate as opposed to those who used the WHO website (OR = 0.47, -53%, p-value < 0.001). In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, the factors associated with intention to vaccinate children were parents who received COVID-19 vaccine, older parents, having children aged 12-18, and parents with lower education levels. Conclusions: Significant proportion of parents are hesitant about the COVID-19 vaccine because they are less confident in its effectiveness, safety, and whether it is essential for their children. Relying on the national official healthcare authority's website for the source of information was associated with increased acceptance of childhood COVID-19 vaccination. As parental intention to vaccinate children against COVID-19 is suboptimal, healthcare authorities could boost vaccine uptake by campaigns targeting hesitant parents.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Child , Humans , Parents , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
3.
BMC Med Educ ; 21(1): 462, 2021 Aug 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1379787

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Medical training programs candidate's interview is an integral part of the residency matching process. During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, conducting these interviews was challenging due to infection prevention restrains (social distancing, namely) and travel restrictions. E-interviews were implemented by the Saudi Commission for Healthcare Specialties (SCFHS) since the matching cycle of March 2020 to hold the interviews in a safer virtual environment while maintaining the same matching quality and standards. AIM: This study was conducted to assess the medical training residency program applicants' satisfaction, stress, and other perspectives for the (SCFHS) March 2020 Matching-cycle conducted through an urgently implemented E-interviews process. METHOD: A cross-sectional, nationwide survey (Additional file 1) was sent to 4153 residency-nominated applicants to the (SCFHS) March 2020 cycle. RESULTS: Among the 510 candidates who responded, 62.2% applied for medical specialties, 20.2% applied for surgical specialties, and 17.6% applied for critical care and emergency specialties. Most respondents (61.2%) never had previous experience with web-based video conferences. Most respondents (80.2%) used the Zoom application to conduct the current E-interviews, whereas only 15.9% used the FaceTime application. 63.3% of the respondents preferred E-interviews over in-person interviews, and 60.6% rated their experience as very good or excellent. 75.7% of the respondents agreed that all their residency program queries were adequately addressed during the E-interviews. At the same time, 52.2% of them agreed that E-interviews allowed them to represent themselves accurately. 28.2% felt no stress at all with their E-interviews experience, while 41.2% felt little stressed and only 8.2% felt highly stressed. The factors that were independently and inversely associated with applicants' level of stress with E-interviews experience were their ability to represent themselves during the interviews (p = 0.001), cost-savings (p < 0.001), their overall rating of the E-interviews quality (p = 0.007) and the speed of the internet connection (p < 0.006). CONCLUSION: Videoconferencing was implemented on an urgent basis during the COVID-19 pandemic in the medical residency application process in Saudi Arabia. It was perceived as an adequate and promising tool to replace in-person interviews in the future. Applicants' satisfaction was mainly driven by good organization, cost-saving, and their ability to present themselves. Future studies to enhance this experience are warranted.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Internship and Residency , Cross-Sectional Studies , Fellowships and Scholarships , Humans , Pandemics , Personnel Selection , SARS-CoV-2
4.
Healthcare (Basel) ; 9(8)2021 Jul 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1335031

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The educational process in different medical schools has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide. As a part of the Saudi government's attempts to contain the spread of the virus, schools' and universities' educational activities and face-to-face lectures have been modified to virtual classrooms. The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of the faculty and the students of an electronic objective structured clinical examination (E-OSCE) activity that took place during the COVID-19 pandemic in the oldest medical school in Saudi Arabia. METHODS: An e-OSCE style examination was designed for the final-year medical students by the pediatrics department, College of Medicine at King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The examination was administered by Zoom™ video conferencing where both students and faculty participated through their laptop or desktop computers. In order to explore the students' and the faculty's perceptions about this experience, a newly designed 13-item online questionnaire was administered at the end of the e-OSCE. RESULTS: Out of 136 participants (23 faculty and 112 students), 73 respondents (e.g., 54% response rate) filled out the questionnaire. Most of the respondents (69.8%) were very comfortable with this new virtual experience. Most participants (53.4%) preferred the e-OSCE compared to the classic face-to-face clinical OSCE during the pandemic. Regarding the e-OSCE assessment student tool, 46.6% reported that it is similar to the classic face-to-face OSCE; however, 38.4% felt it was worse. CONCLUSIONS: The e-OSCE can be a very effective alternative to the classic face-to-face OSCE due to the current circumstances that still pose a significant risk of infection transmission. Future studies should examine different virtual strategies to ensure effective OSCE delivery from the perspective of both faculty and students.

6.
Front Pediatr ; 9: 629549, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1120412

ABSTRACT

Background: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused overwhelming challenges in healthcare worldwide. During such an outbreak, some needs of high-risk groups who require regular follow-ups and long-term management are not met. The vulnerable populations include patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Duchenne muscular dystrophy is characterized by respiratory complications caused by muscle weakness. Hence, patients with this condition are at high risk of severe diseases including COVID-19. Methods: To standardize care and provide optimal treatment to DMD patients in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 pandemic, a panel of experts including neurologists and pediatricians consolidated recommendations for healthcare professionals and caregivers. Results: During this pandemic, substituting unnecessary clinic visits with virtual clinic services was highly recommended, if possible, without compromising clinical outcomes. Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients with respiratory complications should be closely monitored, and those with cardiovascular complications must continue taking angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers. Moreover, individualized home-based rehabilitation management was preferred. Glucocorticoid and new gene correction therapies should be continued. However, new gene correction therapy must be post-poned in newly diagnosed patients. A multidisciplinary decision was required before the initiation of hydroxychloroquine based on the COVID-19 treatment protocol. Conclusion: COVID-19 has caused challenges and transformed access to health care. However, these limitations have provided opportunities for the health care system to adapt. Further, telemedicine has become a reliable platform for follow-up appointments that should be conducted by a multidisciplinary team including physicians, dieticians, and physical therapists.

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