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Second Opinion

Learn about policy issues important to medical schools and teaching hospitals, with Executive Vice President Atul Grover, M.D., Ph.D.

About Project Medical Education (PME)

Project Medical Education (PME) is a hands-on, interactive learning program intended to inform policymakers and their staffs, community leaders, donors, and others about the process of becoming a doctor, the three missions and work of medical schools and teaching hospitals, and the financial and other challenges posed to both students and institutions.

A PME event is designed to cover six blocks of instruction and to run for a day and a half, but it can be amended to fit the needs of the host institution, presenters, or participants.

The program is meant to be education, not advocacy. Bringing key stakeholders to campuses is a compelling way to demonstrate the intersection between medical education, patient care, and medical research.

Why PME?
We have designed PME as a firsthand journey through the medical education continuum that conveys the overarching messages of medical schools and teaching hospitals and meets the informational needs of participants. The program's core messages are designed to fill identified knowledge gaps. In polls and focus groups, participants said they want:

  • an "up close and personal" look at medical education;
  • a program that moves at a rapid pace, not one that relies only on sitting and listening
  • to have the process presented in "hands-on" situations where they can see it at work; and
  • to speak to a variety of sources, particularly students and residents.

Based on this information, PME designed a program where participants are "admitted" to medical schools, presented with a white coat and directed through activities that show them what it takes to become a doctor. In the process, they gain a better understanding of the operations of medical schools and teaching hospitals - and the impact of their actions.

After completing PME, participants are encouraged to share their experience with their co-workers and urge them to take part in a successive PME program. Additionally, the host institution is offered as a resource for information on health care issues. Combining all of these elements helps participants use their new perspectives in shaping policy to benefit medical education, patient care, and medical research.

What do people say about PME?

"One of the most effective tools for relationship building is having officials and staff spend a day at an institution for a hands-on program that shows the process of medical education: the benefits it provides, its complex funding mechanisms, and the essential role of government in providing the financial support it needs. PME helps institutions organize these experiences so that policymakers and community leaders have the necessary information to make insightful decisions on issues that affect the future of medical education." Karen Fisher, JD, AAMC chief public policy officer

“I see Project Medical Education as a valuable opportunity to provide state legislators and key congressional staff members with a hands-on experience, discovering for themselves the challenges faced by medical students, residents, and physicians in today’s health care environment." Past PME host

"It was priceless to me to be able to see and talk to people on the ground, people who are actually there doing medicine and practicing in the field. It was wonderful." — PME participant

"Because of the Project Medical Education program, I was able to gain new insight into medical school education by having the opportunity to see firsthand medical education through the eyes of the students, professors, and administrators.” —PME participant

Explore Project Medical Education (PME)


Contact Project Medical Education

Jared Dashoff
Public Affairs Specialist
Telephone: 202-828-0441
Email: jdashoff@aamc.org