Island medical school needs female volunteers

Clinic seeks women volunteers for gynecological and breast exams

The Island Medical Program on campus at the University of Victoria is in need of female volunteers to help train the next generation of doctors.

Needless to say, applicants can’t be shy.

The volunteers are trained as Female Clinical Teaching Associates. They’ll help teach second-year medical students how to conduct gynecological and breast exams for clinical skills classes through the Island Medical Program.

“Without FCTAs, there would be no way for students to practice properly,” said Dr. Alex Henri-Bhargava, the IMP’s clinical skills director. “It’s absolutely crucial that doctors-in-training work closely with, and listen to feedback from, the people they’ll soon be serving.”

Volunteers act as both instructor and patient during these exams. Together with a physician tutor, they help a small group of students develop the sensitive communication and proper techniques required to conduct an effective exam.

Medical students uphold the profession’s strict confidentiality standards.

Females interested in participating must be healthy, keen on supporting medical students, and comfortable with their bodies. These sensitive examinations may involve mild physical discomfort. Volunteers are screened and, if selected, trained before the classes start.

Recruitment for FCTAs ends in August. Training occurs in early September; clinical skills classes run from September until October.

Volunteers are paid for training and each exam session.

Interested applicants can contact Karen Basi, the IMP patient programs coordinator, karenpri@uvic.ca or at 250-370-8111, ext. 12386.

reporter@saanichnews.com