All physicians are educators. However, not all physicians are trained to be educators, nor are all physicians given adequate time and resources to teach the learners they are tasked with educating.
Lacking the knowledge, practice, time, and resources to educate has clear negative impacts on physicians' sense of competence, autonomy, and relatedness when approaching this core task.
Here is how ALOE can help:
With ALOE's AI-driven technology, each physician is able to carry a personal education specialist in their pocket. Instead of guessing, blindly emulating other physicians' educational techniques, or trying to recall points from an educational grand rounds session, a physician can open the ALOE app, and ask ALOE's AI-driven ChatBot how to best educate in their given context.
Let's use an example to illustrate this further:
Dr. Abel is on hour 10 of a 12-hour shift in the ED. Dr. Abel is a fairly new attending, having graduated from her residency just 7 months ago. Her intern, Andrew, just presented a patient whose chief complaint is abdominal pain. Dr. Abel is trying to use the time on her walk from the computer to the patient's room to recall how she should go about teaching Andrew how to complete a FAST exam. When she was in residency, many attendings would get frustrated quickly when she was learning a new skill, and she vowed to be different; however, she isn't sure how to teach Andrew this procedural skill without allowing him to take far longer than it should.
Dr. Abel reaches in to her white coat pocket, pulls out her phone, and opens ALOE. She asks her institution's customized ChatBot, "how do I teach a procedural skill?". The ChatBot responds immediately, and in an up-beat manner, giving her a helpful infographic reviewing an evidence-based, step-by-step strategy for teaching procedural skills in the clinical setting. In addition, the ChatBot suggests that the pre- and post- procedural brief and debrief can be as important as the guidance she will provide during the procedure. As a result, Dr. Abel and Andrew stop outside the patient's room to discuss the FAST exam first. Once again, Dr. Abel allows ChatBot to guide her. She asks ChatBot to walk them through a pre-procedural educational brief, and follows the prompts in order. Afterwards, Dr. Abel and Andrew again allow their ChatBot to walk them through a debrief. Andrew and Dr. Abel then tell ChatBot something they learned from the encounter, which they can access at any time by asking ChatBot to remind them. Finally, they each use the evaluation function of the ALOE app to submit brief but substantive evaluations of the other's performance.
Physicians need to know that they have control over the work they do. This includes their teaching duties. ALOE offers autonomy by giving physicians options. Rather than feeling boxed-in, forced to perform their core tasks in a proscribed way, ALOE given physicians the opportunity to explore multiple approaches to a given teaching task.
Let's use an example to illustrate this further:
Dr. Johnson has been asked to give a presentation during next month's medical student clerkship didactic session. He's done this every three months for nine years now, and, to be frank, it started to feel like a joyless chore five years ago. Dr. Johnson values education, but he finds it hard to view this assignment as anything other than one more thing on his plate.
Instead of delivering the same powerpoint talk he has given for the last 9 years, Dr. Johnson wants to try something new. He opens ALOE on his desktop, and uses his institution's custom ChatBot application to explore other educational modalities. He types, "what are some alternatives to powerpoint for teaching medical students?". His ChatBot responds promptly, and celebrates his interest in different learning modalities. ChatBot then offers him several evidence-based options for him to consider, including flipped classroom, problem-based learning, and simulation. Dr. Johnson learns a little more about each option, and decides that he wants to try out a flipped classroom model. He asks ChatBot to tell him more, and he walks through the steps he needs to take to modify his talk. ChatBot also helps Dr. Johnson email the clerkship director and his department's education specialist, who can help him make his idea successful.
Self-determination theory recognizes individuals' need for relatedness. People need to to have meaningful relationships and interactions with other people.
At first, it may seem counter-intuitive that AI-driven technology can be used to increase physicians' sense of relatedness. Counter-intuitive or not, ALOE does just that. How? Well, ALOE is not meant to replace interpersonal interaction but to enhance interpersonal interactions.
Here is a case example that illustrates this point:
Dr. Meyer is a primary care physician working in a federally qualified health center. He went in to medicine because he believes it is his calling to help people who have been marginalized in our society. However, he's been struggling with burn-out lately because his patient caseload seems to be increasing exponentially, while the time he has to see his patients has only diminished.
One of Dr. Meyer's favorite parts of his job is teaching his patients about their health and conditions. Unfortunately, he has had less and less time to accomplish this important task during his shortening visits. That's why Dr. Meyer uses his center's ALOE ChatBot to facilitate these conversations.
Today, he is explaining diabetes to a patient with whom he has just diagnosed the disease. He pulls ChatBot up on his exam room computer and types, "help me explain diabetes to a patient." Immediately, he accesses patient educational materials that are designed to meet the needs of his patient population. Together, they view the materials and he uses the helpful graphics and videos to answer the patient's questions in real-time. When this initial educational conversation comes to a close, Dr. Meyer asks ChatBot to send the patient an email with the information they reviewed, which does not include any protected health information.