An 8 week summer medical clerkship in occupational health is described. A core group of eight people from the Philadelphia area developed a framework and course syllabus, secured funding and faculty, decided upon academic credit versus remuneration, and designated field placements. Printing and faculty stipends were provided by the American Medical Student Association Preventive Medicine and Health Education Project and other sources of funding such as NIOSH, medical schools and associations, labor unions, and philanthropic foundations. The clerkship program required frequent community contact to benefit both the students and the community workers, hygienists, nurses, physicians, management, and government. Future occupational health professionals and practitioners were furnished with information on the effects of industrial processes on health, worker health attitudes, major information sources in the field, and possible therapeutic and preventive solutions. Field trips to industrial sites were combined with syndrome oriented lectures on dermatitis, cancer, stress, and other typical problems. Faculty members worked closely with participating students and shared their expertise in the organizational, legal, and historical aspects of occupational health and clinical techniques. The author concludes that the program received varying responses from academia, company physicians, and union personnel, and that accreditation was the most time consuming aspect of the clerkship preparation.
Occupational Safety and Health Symposia 1978, Division of Technical Services, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio