Queen’s students research the implementation of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in healthcare education and practice

·2 min read

Ishita Aggarwal and Simran Sandhu, third year medical students at Queen’s University, are leading research to promote and implement equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in the medical education and healthcare system.

Every year, Queen’s School of Medicine offers research funding to students to carry out research projects addressing various issues in the healthcare system. Students’ interests in EDI stem from their personal experiences and passion for promoting EDI on campus and the overall healthcare system.

The team shared that Queen’s has implemented more EDI-related learning events into its curriculum over the past couple of years. Still, those events have not been evaluated or assessed in a formalized capacity.

“Simran and I were brought on to do some of the analysis and to assess how effective those events have been for learning and also what gaps continue to remain and what we can do as a cost to fill those gaps,” Aggarwal said.

She further shared the importance of the project in the future because health professionals will serve a very diverse population. It is essential to be informed and educated about some of the experiences that future patients will encounter.

Sandhu also elaborated on how healthcare institutions had been responsible for perpetuating inequities in the past few years. That is one of the reasons their project aims and helps address the impacts of the system on marginalized populations and communities.

“It becomes even more important to integrate these teachings into the curriculum in a way that kind of underscores the content as fundamental rather than just kind of like a supplementary add onto our education,” Sandhu said.

The research process consists of a needs assessment, literature review, evaluating content on the School of Medicine website and curriculum, taking surveys in the school and community, and finally analyzing the findings.

“It will further facilitate curriculum enhancement and better allow us to serve the diverse populations that in just a few years we are going to be interacting with,” Sandhu added.

The two students also shed light on how some projects get more attention in the research field than others depending on significance and funds but shared their gratitude towards Queens, who funded their current research.

Both the students shared their interest in continuing EDI-based research work post-graduation as well.

Zoha Khalid, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, YGK News

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